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Geoscientific Model Development An interactive open-access journal of the European Geosciences Union
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https://doi.org/10.5194/gmd-2020-234
© Author(s) 2020. This work is distributed under
the Creative Commons Attribution 4.0 License.
https://doi.org/10.5194/gmd-2020-234
© Author(s) 2020. This work is distributed under
the Creative Commons Attribution 4.0 License.

Submitted as: model description paper 20 Aug 2020

Submitted as: model description paper | 20 Aug 2020

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This preprint is currently under review for the journal GMD.

PyCHAM (v1.3.4): a Python box model for simulating aerosol chambers

Simon Patrick O'Meara1,2, Shuxuan Xu1, David Topping1, M. Rami Alfarra1,2, Gerard Capes3, Douglas Lowe3, and Gordon McFiggans1 Simon Patrick O'Meara et al.
  • 1Department for Earth and Environmental Sciences, University of Manchester, M13 9PL, UK
  • 2National Centre for Atmospheric Science, University of Manchester, M13 9PL, UK
  • 3Research Computing Services, University of Manchester, M13 9PL, UK

Abstract. In this paper the CHemistry with Aerosol Microphysics in Python (PyCHAM) box model software for aerosol chambers is described and assessed against benchmark simulations for accuracy. The model solves the coupled system of ordinary differential equations for gas-phase chemistry, gas-particle partitioning and gas-wall partitioning. Additionally, it can solve for coagulation, nucleation and particle loss to walls. PyCHAM is open source, whilst the graphical user interface, modular structure, manual and suite of tests for troubleshooting and tracking the effect of modifications to individual modules have been designed for optimal usability. In this paper, the modelled processes are individually assessed against benchmark simulations, and key parameters described. Examples of output when processes are coupled are also provided. Sensitivity of individual processes to relevant parameters is illustrated along with convergence of model output with increasing temporal and spatial resolution. The latter sensitivity analysis informs our recommendations for model setup. Where appropriate, parameterisations for specific processes have been chosen for their general applicability with their rationale detailed here. It is intended that PyCHAM aids the design and analysis of aerosol chamber experiments, with comparison of simulations against observations allowing improvement of process understanding that can be transferred to ambient atmosphere simulations.

Simon Patrick O'Meara et al.

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Simon Patrick O'Meara et al.

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Latest update: 28 Sep 2020
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Short summary
A user-friendly and open source software for simulating aerosol chambers provides a valuable tool for research scientists in designing and analysing their experiments. This paper describes such a software and will therefore provide a useful reference to those applying it. Central to the paper is assessment of the software's accuracy through comparison against previously published simulations.
A user-friendly and open source software for simulating aerosol chambers provides a valuable...
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