21 Feb 2023
 | 21 Feb 2023
Status: this preprint is open for discussion and under review for Atmospheric Chemistry and Physics (ACP).

Arctic observations of Hydroperoxymethyl Thioformate (HPMTF) – seasonal behavior and relationship to other oxidation products from Dimethyl Sulfide at the Zeppelin Observatory, Svalbard

Karolina Siegel, Yvette Gramlich, Sophie L. Haslett, Gabriel Freitas, Radovan Krejci, Paul Zieger, and Claudia Mohr

Abstract. Dimethyl sulfide (DMS), a gas produced by phytoplankton, is the largest source of atmospheric sulfur over marine areas. DMS undergoes oxidation in the atmosphere to form a range of oxidation products, out of which methanesulfonic acid (MSA) and sulfuric acid (SA) are well-known for participating in the formation and growth of atmospheric aerosol particles. Recently, a new oxidation product of DMS, hydroperoxymethyl thioformate (HPMTF) was discovered and later also measured in the atmosphere. Little is still known about the fate of this compound and its potential to partition to the particle phase. In this study, we present a full year (2020) of concurrent gas- and particle-phase observations of HPMTF, MSA, SA and other DMS oxidation products at the Zeppelin Observatory (Ny-Ålesund, Svalbard) located in the Arctic. This is the first time HPMTF has been measured in Svalbard and attempted to be observed in atmospheric particles. The results show that gas-phase HPMTF concentrations largely follow the same pattern as MSA during the sunlit months (April–September), indicating production of HPMTF around Svalbard. However, HPMTF was not observed in significant amounts in the particle phase, despite high gas-phase levels. Particulate MSA and SA were observed during the sunlit months, although the highest median levels of particulate SA were measured in February, coinciding with the highest gaseous SA levels with assumed anthropogenic origin. We further show that gas- and particle-phase MSA and SA are coupled in May–July, whereas HPMTF lies outside of this correlation due to the low particulate concentrations. These results provide more information about the relationship between HPMTF and other DMS oxidation products in a part of the world where these have not been explored yet, and about HPMTF’s ability to contribute to particle growth and cloud formation.

Karolina Siegel et al.

Status: open (until 04 Apr 2023)

Comment types: AC – author | RC – referee | CC – community | EC – editor | CEC – chief editor | : Report abuse
  • RC1: 'Comment on egusphere-2023-146', Anonymous Referee #1, 09 Mar 2023 reply
  • RC2: 'Comment on egusphere-2023-146', Anonymous Referee #2, 17 Mar 2023 reply

Karolina Siegel et al.

Karolina Siegel et al.


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Short summary
Hydroperoxymethyl thioformate (HPMTF) is a recently discovered oxidation product of dimethyl sulfide (DMS). We present a full year of concurrent gas and particle phase observations of HPMTF and other DMS oxidation products from the Arctic. We did not observe significant amounts of HPMTF in the particle phase, but a good agreement between gas phase HMPTF and methanesulfonic acid in the summer. Our study provides information about the relationship between HPMTF and other DMS oxidation products.