Preprints
https://doi.org/10.5194/egusphere-2023-2971
https://doi.org/10.5194/egusphere-2023-2971
25 Jan 2024
 | 25 Jan 2024

Revolutionizing Hailstone Analysis: Exploring Non-Soluble Particles through Innovative Confocal Laser and Scanning Electron Microscopy Techniques

Anthony C. Bernal Ayala, Angela K. Rowe, Lucia E. Arena, Will O. Nachlas, and Maria L. Asar

Abstract. This paper introduces an innovative microscopy analysis methodology to preserve in situ non-soluble particles within hailstones using a protective porous plastic coating, overcoming previous limitations related to melting the hailstone sample. The method is composed of two techniques: trapping non-soluble particles beneath a plastic coat by using the adapted sublimation technique and then analyzing the particles individually with both Confocal Laser Scanning Microscopy (CLSM) and Scanning Electron Microscopy with Energy-Dispersive Spectroscopy (SEM-EDS). CLSM provides insights into physical attributes like particle size and surface topography, enhancing understanding of ice nucleation. SEM-EDS complements CLSM by offering detailed information on individual particle elemental chemistry, enabling classification based on composition. Strategies to reduce background noise from glass substrates during EDS spectral analysis are proposed. By combining powerful, high resolution microscopy techniques, this methodology provides valuable data on hailstone composition and properties. This information can give insights into hail developmental processes by enhancing our understanding of the role of atmospheric particles.

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Anthony C. Bernal Ayala, Angela K. Rowe, Lucia E. Arena, Will O. Nachlas, and Maria L. Asar

Status: final response (author comments only)

Comment types: AC – author | RC – referee | CC – community | EC – editor | CEC – chief editor | : Report abuse
  • RC1: 'Comment on egusphere-2023-2971', Anonymous Referee #1, 02 Feb 2024
    • AC1: 'Reply on RC1', Anthony Crespo Bernal Ayala, 21 Feb 2024
    • AC2: 'Reply on RC1', Anthony Crespo Bernal Ayala, 21 Feb 2024
    • AC3: 'Reply on RC1', Anthony Crespo Bernal Ayala, 18 May 2024
  • RC2: 'Comment on egusphere-2023-2971', Anonymous Referee #2, 28 Mar 2024
    • AC4: 'Reply on RC2', Anthony Crespo Bernal Ayala, 18 May 2024
Anthony C. Bernal Ayala, Angela K. Rowe, Lucia E. Arena, Will O. Nachlas, and Maria L. Asar
Anthony C. Bernal Ayala, Angela K. Rowe, Lucia E. Arena, Will O. Nachlas, and Maria L. Asar

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Short summary
Hail is a challenging weather phenomenon to forecast due to an incomplete understanding of hailstone formation. Microscopy temperature limitations required previous studies to melt hail for analysis. This paper introduces a unique technique using a plastic cover to preserve particles in their location within the hailstone without melting. Therefore, CLSM and SEM-EDS microscopes can be used to determine individual particle size and their chemical composition related to hail formation processes.