Albrecht effect

Albrecht effect

Discussion
Ask a question about 'Albrecht effect'
Start a new discussion about 'Albrecht effect'
Answer questions from other users
Full Discussion Forum
 
Encyclopedia
The Albrecht effect describes how cloud condensation nuclei
Cloud condensation nuclei
Cloud condensation nuclei or CCNs are small particles typically 0.2 µm, or 1/100 th the size of a cloud droplet ) about which cloud droplets coalesce. Water requires a non-gaseous surface to make the transition from a vapour to a liquid. In the atmosphere, this surface presents itself as tiny...

 (CCN), possibly from anthropogenic pollution, may increase cloud lifetime and hence increase the amount of solar radiation reflected from clouds. Because it does not directly interact with incoming or outgoing radiation, it has an indirect effect on climate.

Aerosol particles act as CCNs creating more droplets of a smaller size. These take more time to coalesce to raindrop size (>100μm), reducing precipitation efficiency and hence increasing the lifetime of the cloud. The increased scattering of incoming radiation leads to a cooling of -0.3 to -1.4 Wm−2. This effect is not as well understood as the Twomey effect
Twomey effect
Twomey effect — describes how cloud condensation nuclei , possibly from anthropogenic pollution, may increase the amount of solar radiation reflected by clouds. This is an indirect effect....

.

There are many other effects, indirect and semi-direct aerosol effects resulting in a large uncertainty in the radiative forcing due to aerosols.