skip to content

Atmospheric Chemistry Research Group

The chemistry of the Atmosphere

The chemistry of the gases and particles present in the air around is hugely important area of research. We require a detailed understanding of atmospheric chemistry to enable new pathways to reduce air pollution and climate change. To study this topic requires an approach that combines fundamental laboratory studies on the physico-chemical properties of atmospheric constituents with observations of the abundance and variability of these moities and numerical model simulations that integrate our understanding of the sources and fate of these compounds and with which we can test hypothesis on how they will change under different conditions. In the Archibald team we combine these three approaches to enhance our understanding of the air around us. 

The Archibald Team

We are a diverse team of research scientists and PhD students interested in better understanding what goes on in the atmosphere. 

2017-2018

 

2018-2019 with members of the Schmidt team and the Pyle team. 

PhD Students

Matthew Shin -- ACSIS

James Weber -- CONTEST

Andrea Chlebikova -- SOAR3

Johnny Staunton-Sykes -- VALHOZ

David Wade -- Paleo Composition Climate Interactions

Le Yuan -- Improving Air Quality for Beijing

PostDocs and Research Assistants

Scott Archer-Nicholls -- UKCA-CRI

Paul Griffiths -- NCAS-Climate

Zainab Hakim -- Chemistry-Climate Model Evaluation over India

Part III Students

2018-19

Rachel Allen --

Molly Harte -- 

Alice Cozens -- 

Jack Entwistle -- 

Domas Kalvaitis --

2017-18

Matthew Shin -- Evaluating trends in tropospheric ozone over the UKCA model

Tom Surrall -- Evaluation of emission inventories of VOCs over India

Alec Granville-Willet -- Evaluation of Archean atmosphere HCHO photochemistry

Research Interests

Our research involves the development and application of state-of-the-art chemistry-climate models. With these models we are trying to answer a number of questions relevant to society: (i) What are the impacts of changes in man made emissions on the composition of the atmosphere (ii) how does the changing composition of the atmosphere affect climate (iii) how will a changing climate impact the composition of the atmosphere.

There are three main areas of research within the group:

  • Understanding the fundamentals of gas phase chemistry in the atmosphere
  • Understanding the impacts of changes in gases and particles on climate
  • Understanding the impacts of changes in climate on gases and particles

Current funded projects

The North Atlantic Climate System Integrated Study: ACSIS

Oxidant Budgets of the Northern Hemisphere: OXBUDS

Process analysis, observations and modelling - Integrated solutions for cleaner air for Delhi: PROMOTE

    You can find out more about ACSIS and the work we do in our group by watching this video here (many thanks to Dr Steven Lee!).

    Calendar

    Completed projects

    Specific projects have included:

    • The mechanisms of oxidation of biogenic hydrocarbons

    One of the main areas of research in my group is trying to better understand the mechanisms of oxidation of biogenic hydrocarbons - in particular the oxidation of isoprene. Isoprene enters the atmosphere via emissions from plants and trees. Every year a mass roughly equal to that of the entire human population is emitted into the atmosphere! Owing to this, and its high reactivity, it is paramount to include isoprene chemistry in chemistry-climate models. However, the details of the chemistry vary wildly between models and isoprene chemistry has been suggested as a major cause of disagreement between model predictions of secondary pollutants. The figure below highlights some of the chemistry of isoprene oxidation initiated by the hydroxyl radical. 

    • The impacts of fracking on air quality

    In collaboration with the Met Office our group have also looked at the role of fracking in the UK, and the impacts of unconventional hydrocarbon extraction on air quality. For this work we use a version of the Met Office weather forecast model modified for simulating air pollution. The animation below shows the domain this model covers and the simulated levels of the pollutant ozone (O3) from the model.  

    • Long range transport of trace gases

    Gases that have lifetimes against chemical reaction in the atmosphere greater than a few days can be transported over great distances. The animation below shows how the ozone depleting substance methyl chloride (CH3Cl) can be emitted from fires in Brazil and transported over several days and 100s of km across South America. Daily average observations of CH3Cl recorded at the AGAGE monitoring site in Barbados are plotted below the animation and you can see that there are several periods where "spikes" are seen in these data. We try to understand both the roles of atmospheric transport and chemistry over these long ranges to answer questions such as how will changes in emissions downwind of us impact the quality of the air we bretahe? 

    For more information about the groups published work see my publications below and my Google scholar page

    For more information about Alex check out his ORCID

    Teaching

    I lecture the 1A kinetics course and a Part II course on Chemistry in the Atmosphere. 

    Software

    For those interested in looking at some simple numerical problems concerning atmospheric chemistry, feel free to have a play with this simple R script: https://bitbucket.org/alex_archibald/atmos_chem_model 

     

    Publications

    ROOOH: a missing piece of the puzzle for OH measurements in low-NO environments?
    C Fittschen, M Al Ajami, S Batut, V Ferracci, S Archer-Nicholls, AA Archibald, C Schoemaecker
    – Atmospheric Chemistry and Physics
    (2019)
    19,
    349
    Recent multivariate changes in the North Atlantic climate system, with a focus on 2005–2016
    J Robson, RT Sutton, A Archibald, F Cooper, M Christensen, LJ Gray, NP Holliday, C Macintosh, M McMillan, B Moat, M Russo, R Tilling, K Carslaw, D Desbruyères, O Embury, DL Feltham, DP Grosvenor, S Josey, B King, A Lewis, GD McCarthy, C Merchant, AL New, CH O'Reilly, SM Osprey, K Read, A Scaife, A Shepherd, B Sinha, D Smeed, D Smith, A Ridout, T Woollings, M Yang
    – International Journal of Climatology
    (2018)
    38,
    5050
    Cloud impacts on photochemistry: building a climatology of photolysis rates from the Atmospheric Tomography mission
    SR Hall, K Ullmann, MJ Prather, CM Flynn, LT Murray, AM Fiore, G Correa, SA Strode, SD Steenrod, JF Lamarque, J Guth, B Josse, J Flemming, V Huijnen, N Luke Abraham, AT Archibald
    – Atmospheric Chemistry and Physics
    (2018)
    18,
    16809
    Tropospheric ozone in CCMI models and Gaussian process emulation to understand biases in the SOCOLv3 chemistry–climate model
    LE Revell, A Stenke, F Tummon, A Feinberg, E Rozanov, T Peter, N Luke Abraham, H Akiyoshi, AT Archibald, N Butchart, M Deushi, P Jöckel, D Kinnison, M Michou, O Morgenstern, FM O'Connor, LD Oman, G Pitari, DA Plummer, R Schofield, K Stone, S Tilmes, D Visioni, Y Yamashita, G Zeng
    – Atmospheric Chemistry and Physics
    (2018)
    18,
    16155
    Using a virtual machine environment for developing, testing, and training for the UM-UKCA composition-climate model, using Unified Model version 10.9 and above
    NL Abraham, AT Archibald, P Cresswell, S Cusworth, M Dalvi, D Matthews, S Wardle, S Whitehouse
    – Geoscientific Model Development
    (2018)
    11,
    3647
    Quasi-Newton methods for atmospheric chemistry simulations: Implementation in UKCA UM vn10.8
    E Esentürk, N Luke Abraham, S Archer-Nicholls, C Mitsakou, P Griffiths, A Archibald, J Pyle
    – Geoscientific Model Development
    (2018)
    11,
    3089
    Potential impacts of emissions associated with unconventional hydrocarbon extraction on UK air quality and human health
    AT Archibald, C Ordóñez, E Brent, ML Williams
    – Air Quality, Atmosphere & Health
    (2018)
    11,
    627
    Estimates of ozone return dates from Chemistry-Climate Model Initiative simulations
    SS Dhomse, D Kinnison, MP Chipperfield, RJ Salawitch, I Cionni, MI Hegglin, NL Abraham, H Akiyoshi, AT Archibald, EM Bednarz, S Bekki, P Braesicke, N Butchart, M Dameris, M Deushi, S Frith, SC Hardiman, B Hassler, LW Horowitz, RM Hu, P Jöckel, B Josse, O Kirner, S Kremser, U Langematz, J Lewis, M Marchand, M Lin, E Mancini, V Marécal, M Michou, O Morgenstern, FM O'Connor, L Oman, G Pitari, DA Plummer, JA Pyle, LE Revell, E Rozanov, R Schofield, A Stenke, K Stone, K Sudo, S Tilmes, D Visioni, Y Yamashita, G Zeng
    – Atmospheric Chemistry and Physics
    (2018)
    18,
    8409
    Revisiting the Mystery of Recent Stratospheric Temperature Trends
    AC Maycock, WJ Randel, AK Steiner, AY Karpechko, J Christy, R Saunders, DWJ Thompson, CZ Zou, A Chrysanthou, N Luke Abraham, H Akiyoshi, AT Archibald, N Butchart, M Chipperfield, M Dameris, M Deushi, S Dhomse, G Di Genova, P Jöckel, DE Kinnison, O Kirner, F Ladstädter, M Michou, O Morgenstern, F O'Connor, L Oman, G Pitari, DA Plummer, LE Revell, E Rozanov, A Stenke, D Visioni, Y Yamashita, G Zeng
    – Geophysical Research Letters
    (2018)
    45,
    9919
    Global modelling of the total OH reactivity: investigations on the "missing" OH sink and its atmospheric implications
    V Ferracci, I Heimann, N Luke Abraham, JA Pyle, AT Archibald
    – Atmospheric Chemistry and Physics
    (2018)
    18,
    7109
    • 1 of 9
    • >

    Head of group

    Research Interest Group

    Telephone number

    01223 763819

    Research Interests