Primary Supervisor - Professor Jan Kaiser
Secondary Supervisor - Dr Markus Frey (British Antarctic Survey)
Supervisory Team - Dr Peer Nowack (School of Environmental Sciences, University of East Anglia)
Background & Objectives: Global warming has led to large reductions in polar sea-ice extent over the past 40 years. Substantial parts of the ocean that used to be covered by multi-year sea ice in summer are now open, releasing primary aerosol through waves and bubble bursting. Also, gas exchange is significantly faster and algal blooms lead to the production of gases and aerosol particles. The gases and particles that are released are important for atmospheric chemistry and climate.
So-called "Ozone Depletion Events" (ODEs) are frequent spring-time phenomena in the polar lower atmosphere. During ODEs, bromide from sea ice is released as Br reacts quickly with tropospheric ozone (O3), a process known as bromine explosion. This often leads to the complete destruction of O3. Even though bromine explosions have been studied for over three decades, the exact details of their initiation and the nature of the reactive bromine sources are still unclear.
Frost flowers on sea-ice and precipitation of a particular mineral (ikaite) are possible key factors. The UEA Roland von Glasow Air-Sea-Ice Chamber (RvG-ASIC) will be used to simulate these processes under controlled conditions and for the first time explicitly demonstrate their relevance.
Methods: You will use state-of-the-art methods and instruments to measure concentrations and fluxes of gases and particles above snow and ice in the RvG-ASIC facility. In addition, there may be the possibility to deploy instruments during a BAS polar field campaign. You will interpret your observations with a numerical model to quantitatively understand the laboratory experiments and contrast them with existing or new field observations, with the ultimate goal to improve global chemistry-climate models.
Training: You will be part of a dynamic research team at UEA (COAS) and BAS (AIC), working on a wide range of environmental topics in the polar regions. You will be trained in the relevant instruments and sampling techniques, modelling and analysis. You will attend an atmospheric sciences summer school and receive support to publish results in peer-reviewed journals and at international conferences.