A collection of airborne solid or liquid particles, with a typical size between 0.01 and 10 ┬Ám and residing in the atmosphere for at least several hours. Aerosols may be of either natural or anthropogenic origin. Aerosols may influence climate in two ways: directly through scattering and absorbing radiation, and indirectly through acting as condensation nuclei for cloud formation or modifying the optical properties and lifetime of clouds (from the always useful IPCC glossary).

See-also: wiki:Aerosol.