Reactivity at the air-water interface

Main Research line: Atmospheric Chemistry
Main Researcher: Josep M. Anglada

Almost 50% of the Earth’s atmosphere is covered by clouds that can absorb many atmospheric molecules into cloud droplets. There are many experimental and theoretical evidences that important atmospheric trace gases remain adsorbed in the air-water interface, suggesting an enhanced reactivity in this environment. However, this chemistry is still not well understood.

What we do

In collaboration with the groups of Manuel Ruiz-Lopez at Nancy University and Joseph S. Francisco at Nebraska University we investigate chemical and photochemical processes taking place at air-water interface with the aim of understanding, rationalizing and predicting the chemical processes occurring at the air- droplet interface. It is well known that photolysis of ozone followed by reaction of atomic oxygen with water vapor produces hydroxyl radical, We have predicted that ozone resides at the air-water interface, that its photolysis in this environment is modified and that the following production of hydroxyl radical is enhanced by four orders of magnitude, which has an influence on a global scale.

The Figure shows how sulfuric acid and its complexes with water catalyze its own formation in the atmosphere. (J. Am. Chem. Soc., 2012, 134, 20632)

The Figure shows how sulfuric acid and its complexes with water catalyze its own formation in the atmosphere. (J. Am. Chem. Soc., 2012, 134, 20632)

Related publications

J.M. Anglada, M. Martins-Costa, M.F. Ruiz-López, J.S. Francisco, Spectroscopic signatures of ozone at the air-water interface and photochemistry implications, Proc. Natl. Acad. Sci., 2014, 111, 11618

Marilia T. C. Martins-Costa, Josep M. Anglada, Joseph S. Francisco and Manuel F. Ruiz-Lopez, Reactivity of volatile organic compounds at the surface of a water droplet, J. Am. Chem. Soc, 2012, 134, 11821

Marilia T. C. Martins-Costa, Josep M. Anglada, Joseph S. Francisco and Manuel F. Ruiz-Lopez, Reactivity of small radicals of atmospheric interest at the air/water interface, Angew. Chemie. Int. Engl. Ed., 2012, 124, 5509

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