Organic aerosols are ubiquitous in the earth's atmosphere. They have been extensively studied in urban, rural and marine environments. However, little is known about the fluorescence properties of water-soluble organic carbon (WSOC) or their transport to and distribution in the polar regions. Here, we present evidence that fluorescent WSOC is a substantial component of High Arctic aerosols. The ratios of fluorescence intensity of protein-like peak to humic-like peak generally increased from dark winter to early summer, indicating an enhanced contribution of protein-like organics from the ocean to Arctic aerosols after the polar sunrise. Such a seasonal pattern is in agreement with an increase of stable carbon isotope ratios of total carbon (delta C-13(TC)) from -26.8 parts per thousand to -22.5 parts per thousand. Our results suggest that Arctic aerosols are derived from a combination of the long-range transport of terrestrial organics and local sea-to-air emission of marine organics, with an estimated contribution from the latter of 8.7-77% (mean 45%).
2015. Vol. 5, 9845