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Sci Adv. 2016 May 20;2(5):e1501912. doi: 10.1126/sciadv.1501912. eCollection 2016 May.

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

Author information

1
Université de Genève, GAP-Biophotonics, Chemin de Pinchat 22, 1211 Geneva 4, Switzerland.
2
Karlsruhe Institute of Technology, Hermann-von-Helmholtz-Platz 1, 76344 Eggenstein-Leopoldshafen, Germany.
3
Université de Genève, GAP-Nonlinear, Chemin de Pinchat 22, 1211 Geneva 4, Switzerland.

Abstract

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/vapor system at up to 140,000 frames per second over 30 ms, we conclude that a shockwave vaporization supersaturates the neighboring 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, a process that strongly modifies the particle size distribution and, thus, the albedo of typical cirrus clouds.

KEYWORDS:

Nucleation; cirrus; ice particle; laser filamentation; ultrafast optics; ultrashort laser

PMID:
27386537
PMCID:
PMC4928985
DOI:
10.1126/sciadv.1501912
[Indexed for MEDLINE]
Free PMC Article

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