Scientific article
Open access

Laser vaporization of cirrus-like ice particles with secondary ice multiplication

Published inScience advances, vol. 2, no. 5, e1501912
Publication date2016

We investigate the interaction of ultrashort laser filaments with individual 90 µm ice particles, representative of cirrus particles. The ice particles fragment under laser illumination. By monitoring the evolution of the corresponding ice/vapour system at up to 140,000 frames per second over 30 ms, we conclude that a shockwave vaporization supersaturates the neighbouring region relative to ice, allowing the nucleation and growth of new ice particles, supported by laser-induced plasma photochemistry. This process constitutes the first direct observation of filament-induced secondary ice multiplication (FISIM), a process that strongly modifies the particle size distribution, hence the albedo, of typical cirrus clouds.

  • Aerosols
  • Cirrus
  • Laser femtoseconde
  • Filamentation
  • European Commission - Laser Filamentation for Probing and Controlling Atmospheric Processes [291201]
  • Swiss National Science Foundation - Marie Heim-Vogtlin grant no. S17982, and NCCR (National Center of Competence in Research) “MUST” (Molecular Ultrafast Science and Technology)
Citation (ISO format)
MATTHEWS, Mary et al. Laser vaporization of cirrus-like ice particles with secondary ice multiplication. In: Science advances, 2016, vol. 2, n° 5, p. e1501912. doi: 10.1126/sciadv.1501912
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ISSN of the journal2375-2548

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