Physicist Professor Bernadett Weinzierl is at DLR-Institute of Atmospheric Physics in Oberpfaffenhofen and at LMU’s Institute for Meteorology, and her research focuses on the physics of aerosols in Earth’s atmosphere. Aerosols are tiny particles such as mineral dust or black carbon suspended in the air. These particles can be transported over distances of thousands of kilometers and, because they can absorb and scatter solar radiation and affect cloud formation, they have a significant impact on atmospheric chemistry, air quality, climate and local weather. It is not yet clear how aerosol particles are altered during their long journeys through the atmosphere. In particular, we would like to learn more about how absorption of radiation by aerosols such as mineral dust and black carbon affects local weather patterns and global climate and whether the absorption in mixed dust-black carbon layers is dominated by the natural or by the anthropogenic aerosol component. In her ERC project A-LIFE she plans to investigate the behavior of absorbing aerosol layers and the relationship between their interactions with radiation and their lifetimes in the atmosphere. A-LIFE will contribute to a better understanding of the roles of absorbing aerosol layers in the atmosphere and in the climate system, and will provide important information for addressing the benefits of black carbon emission controls for mitigating climate change.
Bernadett Weinzierl studied atmospheric physics at LMU, specializing in Meteorology, and obtained her doctorate at the Faculty of Physics. She subsequently joined the the German Aerospace Center (DLR) and was working as visiting scientist at the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration’s Earth System Research Laboratory in Boulder, Colorado (USA) as well as working for Droplet Measurement Technologies Inc. in the same city. In 2010 she was chosen to head the joint LMU-DLR-Helmholtz Young Investigator’s Group AerCARE and became a Junior Professor in the Faculty of Physics at LMU in 2011.
Contact: Bernadett Weinzierl