Atmospheric Reactive Gases and Particles Generated by Electrical Discharges: Laboratory and Modeling Studies

Project: Research project

Project Details


This project involves laboratory studies to improve the understanding of the conditions by which hydroxyl radical (OH) and hydroperoxyl radical (HO2) are produced by electrical discharges such as lightning. This research will also investigate the generation of lightning produced ozone and nitrogen oxides. These efforts will improve the parameterizations of the production of lightning-produced hydrogen oxide radicals in chemical transport and climate models, leading to better predictions for air quality and climate change.

This project includes 7 tasks: (1) Performing more laboratory studies over a greater range of temperature, pressure, and water vapor ranges that match atmospheric conditions at different altitudes; (2) Testing the dependence of lightning-produced hydrogen oxide radicals, (LHOx), lightning-produced ozone (LO3), and lightning-produced nitrogen oxides (LNOx) on the presence of cloud particles with different cloud water content; (3) Generating the visible and subvisible electrical discharges by different methods; (4) Exploring the generation of LHOx, LO3, and LNOx with subvisible discharges, corona, and sparks over a wider range of charge transfer; (5) Determining the cause of the slower-than-expected decay of LHOx in the presence of 100's of ppbv to ppmv levels of spark-generated LNOx; (6) Examining particle production; and (7) Working with cloud modelers and chemical transport modelers on parameterizations.

This effort includes the training of both undergraduate and graduate students and a postdoctoral scholar who will participate in the research.

This award reflects NSF's statutory mission and has been deemed worthy of support through evaluation using the Foundation's intellectual merit and broader impacts review criteria.

Effective start/end date2/15/221/31/25


  • National Science Foundation: $696,113.00


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