One of the least understood and most contentious issues surrounding aviation's impact on the environment has been the potential contribution of contrails to climate change. During the grounding of the US commercial airline fleet in the days following 9/11, scientists at the University of Wisconsin claimed that the absence of contrails was responsible for a 1.1 deg. C (2 deg. F) change in temperature over the US. Now researchers in the UK and Germany, using computer modeling not available in ...

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