Karsa MION provides key insights into fine particle production processes in coniferous forests.

Figure 6 of Iyer, S., Rissanen, M.P., Valiev, R. et al. Molecular mechanism for rapid autoxidation in α-pinene ozonolysis. Nat Commun 12, 878 (2021).

Karsa’s multi-scheme chemical ionization inlet (MION) sub-second reaction time was the key enabler in a study recently published in Nature Communications. A team of scientists from Tampere UniversityINAR/University of Helsinki, University of Washington and our partner company Aerodyne Research, Inc. used MION to examine large new particle formation in conifer forests by studying molecular mechanisms, specifically rapid autoxidation in α-pinene ozonolysis.


In a statement by University of Tampere, lead author Siddharth Iyer said: “The key issue, unaccounted for in previous studies, is the vast excess energy released in the initial reaction of ozone with the a-pinene molecule. Our research reveals how this energy can break certain chemical bonds inside the a-pinene molecule, which would otherwise slow down the formation of aerosol-forming products to the point of irrelevance. In contrast, the reaction mechanism discovered by us allows these products to form within less than one second”. 


Matti Rissanen, assistant professor in Experimental Aerosol Science at Tampere University explains: “The MION enabled us to study much shorter reaction times than has been achieved previously for realistic atmospheric conditions. The novel inlet design allowed to inspect the reaction products, and especially the reactive radical intermediates, even below 100 ms timeframe. This was paramount for showing how fast the autoxidation can propagate in biogenic monoterpenes, the most common direct source of atmospheric secondary organic aerosol.”


This and another recent study demonstrate, how Karsa’s innovative products enable ground breaking research in atmospheric science. We strongly believe that these studies are just the beginning of the discoveries MION will make possible. For more information about MION in your projects, please contact us at sales@karsa.fi.