AAAR 39th Annual Conference

Special Symposia

Aerosol Standards

Jimmy Radney and Chris Zangmeister, National Institute of Standards and Technology

Quantitative measurements require the development and implementation of instruments and methods that are SI traceable and referenced to known values. In 2011, the aerosol community held two workshops on the metrology needs of the community and potential reference materials: the 10th International Conference of Carbonaceous Particles in the Atmosphere (ICCPA) in Vienna, Austria and the Aerosol Metrology and Needs for Climate Science at the National Institute of Standards and Technology (NIST) in Gaithersburg, MD (Baumgardner et al. 2012; Energetics Incorporated Team 2011). Both workshops specifically identified the need for reference materials and methods for instrument calibration, evaluation and intercomparison to improve data harmonization and comparability between and across measurement platforms.

It is now a decade later and time for a progress update on these previously recommended benchmarks. The purpose of this symposium is to bring together researchers working in the broad area of “aerosol standards” that includes reference materials, reference methods and reference data. We invite abstracts that address:

  • Instrument calibrations, evaluations and inter-comparisons between laboratories and/or methods
  • Reference materials and methods for black carbon (soot), cloud condensation nuclei and ice nucleating particles
  • Calibration and validation of aerosol size distribution and number density measurements both in the field and laboratory
  • Simple, low-cost, and robust calibrations for species-resolved mass concentration measurements
  • Reference data sets for linking measured and modeled aerosol properties.

Baumgardner, D., Popovicheva, O., Allan, J., Bernardoni, V., Cao, J., Cavalli, F., Cozic, J., Diapouli, E., Eleftheriadis, K., Genberg, P. J., et al. (2012). Soot reference materials for instrument calibration and intercomparisons: a workshop summary with recommendations. Atmos. Meas. Tech. 5:1869-1887. DOI: 10.5194/amt-5-1869-2012

Energetics Incorporated Team (2011). Workshop on Aerosol Metrology Needs for Climate Science, Summary Report December 2011, National Institute of Standards and Technology, Columbia, MD.


Infectious Aerosols in the Age of COVID-19

Paul Dabisch-National Biodefense Analysis and Countermeasures Centers
Gedi Mainelis-Rutgers University
Shanna Ratnesar-Shumate-University of Nebraska Medical Center

The COVID-19 pandemic has led to a global debate about the mechanisms of transmission of respiratory diseases.  The multidisciplinary field of aerosol science has been thrust into the forefront of this debate challenging traditional notions of infectious aerosol contributions to person-to-person transmission.  Since the onset of the COVID-19 pandemic, a multitude of studies have been conducted to study the various parameters that contribute to aerosol transmission and to determine mechanisms to reduce infections to quell the pandemic.  The goal of this symposium is to highlight recent research examining the potential and evidence for aerosol transmission in COVID-19 and other infectious diseases, as well as gaps in our understanding that need to be filled to better understand the role aerosols play in the transmission of infectious diseases.  Specific topics of interest include the identification and characterization of aerosol sources and exposure assessment, factors influencing the survival of infectious aerosols in the environment, computational air flow modeling of infectious aerosols in the built (indoor) environment, sampling approaches, mitigation strategies to reduce infectious aerosol loads in public settings, development of inhalational animal models of disease to aid in understanding both disease progression and development of medical and other countermeasures. Talks on various infectious diseases, including COVID-19, that highlight information and findings relevant to the current and future pandemics are encouraged.


Translating aerosol research for societal impact: Science communication and public outreach

Translating aerosol research for societal impact: Science communication and public outreach.

Marina Vance, University of Colorado Boulder
Andy Grieshop, North Carolina State University
Rachel O’Brien, College of William & Mary

Aerosols’ impacts on people’s everyday lives were dramatically demonstrated in 2020, especially due to the COVID-19 pandemic and in severe wildfires season in both northern and southern hemispheres. This session will provide an opportunity for presentations and discussion beyond traditional aerosol science and engineering, covering the challenges and opportunities related to communication and community participation in aerosol research. Submission topics considered for this special symposium can span the range of science communication or community involvement research related to aerosols broadly, including emerging topics such as the COVID-19 pandemic and associated science communication issues, wildfires, climate change, communicating lower-cost sensor data and uncertainty, citizen science, environmental justice, and others.

The goal of this symposium is to enable an exchange of ideas and experiences to advance the aerosol science research community and to bring benefits to the broader society and the environment.

We invite abstracts that address:

  • Science communication related to climate change, wildfires, and other emerging environmental issues
  • Historical and disciplinary perspectives on the role of aerosols in disease transmission
  • Public understanding of indoor disinfection and air cleaning and filtration
  • Use of social media and other online platforms to share scientific advances and educate the public
  • Communicating lower-cost sensor data and uncertainty
  • Engaging the public via environmental justice and citizen science studies
  • Measuring and communicating air quality trends in developing countries


Wildfire Aerosols

Amara Holder, US Environmental Protection Agency
Jeffrey Pierce, Colorado State University
Yong Ho Kim, University of North Carolina Chapel Hill

In Australia in 2019 and the western United States in 2020 devastating wildfires burned millions of acres and thousands of vehicles and structures. Smoke from these fires spread globally and persisted in some areas for weeks impacting the millions of people that live in the surrounding areas. The high smoke concentrations impacted local meteorology leading to smoke inversions in valleys and large areas of stagnant air further increasing concentrations. These extremely high concentrations surpassed the air quality index and, in some cases, exceeded the limits of ambient monitoring instruments. Although urban fine particulate matter (PM) has a clear causal relationship for many adverse health effects, it is not clear how the potency of smoke from wildfires may differ traditional urban pollution. Nor is it clear how this potency is impacted by varying fire types, exposure durations and concentrations, and interactions with other pollutant sources. There are also questions on the effectiveness of different strategies for reducing smoke exposure indoors as well as personal-level strategies that can be used to protect outdoor workers at these high concentrations.

The purpose of this symposium is to bring together researchers seeking to understand the characteristics of smoke emitted from wildfires, fires in the wildland urban interface, and other landscape fires (prescribed and agricultural burning) and how this smoke impacts ambient and indoor air quality, human health, and climate.

We invite abstracts that address:

  • The physical, chemical, and optical characteristics of smoke
  • Atmospheric aging and interaction of smoke with other air pollution sources
  • Measurements and models of smoke and its impact on air quality, meteorology, and climate
  • Methods to reduce smoke exposure and their effectiveness in the indoor and outdoor environment
  • The toxicology, epidemiology, and health impacts of smoke exposure
  • Impacts of smoke on the susceptibility to viral infections
Dates to Remember

October 18 - 22, 2021
AAAR 38th Annual Conference
Albuqureque, New Mexico

Code of Conduct


Albuquerque Convention Center
401 2nd St NW

Albuquerque, New Mexico


Click here to register online

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Regular $609 $699 $792
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