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MCM Tutorial

by A. R. Rickard, D. R. Glowacki, J. C. Young and M. J. Pilling

With thanks to C. Bloss, R. Sommariva and C. Martin


The Master Chemical Mechanism (MCM) is based on the original protocol devised by Jenkin et al. in 1997, which has subsequently been updated and improved (Saunders et al., 2003; Jenkin et al., 2003). The MCM can be easily navigated and downloaded (in a variety of formats, either in full or subsets of the mechanism) from the MCM website.

This tutorial was originally designed for a EUROCHAMP MCM workshop the aim of which was to provide hands-on experience of using the MCM in support of chamber studies.

The tutorial can now be completed by following the links below and downloading the linked files when needed (right click on the link and select "save link/target as" to save the file to your computer) or the complete tutorial can be downloaded as a zip file by clicking here.

The tutorial contains a variety of exercises designed to demonstrate the use of the Master Chemical Mechanism in the context of environmental chamber studies. The tutorial consists of five sections:

  1. Introduction to the use of FACSIMILE and the MCM.
  2. Introduction to chamber modelling with the MCM.
  3. Importance of chamber specific auxiliary mechanisms.
  4. Chamber modelling of aromatic system using MCMv3.1.
  5. Construction of ozone isopleths
  6. References
  7. Answers and discussion

To complete this tutorial you will need the FACSIMILE integrator to run the models, a program such as word pad or notepad to view and edit the models, MS Excel for processing the model output and Origin for constructing the ozone isopleth plots. Checklists of the essential tasks for each model run can be obtained by clicking on the appropriate link at the bottom of each section.

Most of the exercises are based on real data from chamber studies carried out at the EUPHORE environmental chamber in Valencia, Spain. For more information please visit the main MCM website. For questions on this tutorial and the MCM in general and to keep updated on recent development and improvements please subscribe to the mailing list.

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Andrew Rickard