Tag Archives: Amazonia

Experiment in Amazonia becomes global model for research

17By Frances Jones
Agência FAPESP – A scientific project begun 35 years ago in the heart of the Amazon Forest is bearing fruit around the globe. A million-dollar experiment developed by an international team on the island of Borneo in Asia is the most recent study to replicate and expand upon the Dynamic Biological Project on Forest Fragments (PDBFF), the result of cooperation between the National Institute of Amazon Research (Inpa) and the Smithsonian Institution.
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Amazon Seeds Its Own Rain

AmazonBy Sid Perkins – T

Science – he Amazon rainforest makes its own rain. That’s the conclusion of a new study, which finds that microscopic bits of potassium-rich salt spewed skyward by trees and fungi may be seeding much of the region’s precipitation. Because aerosols also scatter light back into space, they can cool Earth’s surface as well.

Unless temperatures are extremely cold, raindrops don’t just form in thin air; molecules of water vapor must actually aggregate around a tiny core. Those seeds can either be particles such as mineral dust, soot, salt spray from the ocean—even airborne bacteria—or droplets such as the sulfur dioxide spewed by volcanoes. Scientists previously knew that the organic-rich particles of haze floating above the Amazon Basin acted as the seeds for much of the rainfall there, but what had served to trigger the growth of those particles—known scientifically as secondary organic aerosols—was a big mystery, says Christopher Pöhlker, an atmospheric chemist at the Max Planck Institute for Chemistry in Mainz, Germany.

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Source and Photo: Science, August 30th, 2012
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Study collects data on the emissions from burning in Amazonia

By Karina Toledo

Agência FAPESP – A group of Brazilian and British researchers began flying over Amazonia on September 12 to understand how the emissions from fires in the region are changing the local and global climate.

With the help of cutting-edge technology, scientists are collecting data on the chemical composition and physical properties of the smoke emitted. They are also verifying how gases and the solid particles released into the air modify the composition of clouds, change the atmospheric chemistry and interact with solar radiation.

“We have conducted 35 flight hours to date. Our target is to reach 60 to 70 hours through October 5, when the data collection phase ends,” comments Paulo Artaxo, professor at Universidade de São Paulo (USP) and one of the coordinators of the South American Biomass Burning Analysis (SAMBBA).

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Source and Photo: FAPESP, October 24th 2012
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