Airborne Sampling in the North American Arctic to Assess the Impact of Long-range Transport of Pollutants on the Composition of the Arctic Troposphere and Climate

Jack Dibb
Research Associate Professor

Tropospheric Chemistry/Air-Snow Exchange joint Appointment
UNH Dept. of Earth Sciences

Friday, Oct. 16, 2009, 3:00pm
Chase 130

POLARCAT was a very large international campaign, organized as part of IPY, targeting improved understanding of atmospheric transport of pollutants into the Arctic and the impact of these pollutants on climate in the region. Hundreds of research teams contributed to POLARCAT, including US teams supported by NASA, NOAA, NSF and DOE. The NASA contribution to POLARCAT was named ARCTAS, and it involved airborne sampling from three aircraft, close coordination with satellite-based remote sensing teams, and multiple modeling teams for both forecasting and analysis. This presentation will provide overviews of POLARCAT and ARCTAS, but will focus largely on the specific objectives targeted by, and preliminary findings that were obtained from, the NASA DC-8. Emphasis on the DC-8 reflects the fact that two teams from UNH were onboard this platform for ARCTAS. Thus, we understand the multiple considerations that guided each flight, and the implications of the observations that were made.


Jack E. Dibb is a Research Associate Professor with the Complex Systems Research Center in the Institute for the Study of Earth, Oceans, and Space and the Department of Earth Sciences at the University of New Hampshire. He received his PhD in 1988 from the State University of New York, Binghamton. Dr. Dibb has been studying air-snow exchange processes on the Greenland Ice Sheet, at South Pole, and in temperate snow packs since 1988. He has organized and lead multi-institutional and international investigations at the Summit site, including the first US year-round scientific sampling program . These efforts have convinced the National Science Foundation to establish a scientific observatory at Summit to support ongoing investigations of air-snow exchange as well as a growing range of diverse experiments in other fields. Dr. Dibb has also contributed to improved understanding of global tropospheric chemistry through participation in a series of NASA/NSF airborne sampling campaigns. Contributions to air quality investigations have been made through participation in several NOAA ship cruises and several intensive ground-based campaigns in Houston, Texas. He has published more than 150 papers in international journals.