An aerosol is a tiny particle of a solid or liquid that is suspended in a gas. Usually, this gas is air.
You might have heard of aerosols in the context of pollution or deadly viruses. But there are plenty of natural aerosols in the world. Mist and fog are both aerosols — tiny drops of water suspended in the air.
Of course, people make aerosols too. The smoke from a campfire contains aerosols in the form of tiny particles of soot. Burning fossil fuels to make energy pollutes the air with aerosols. And some diseases — such as measles — can spread as aerosols.
In a sentence
Wildfires can shoot aerosols high into the atmosphere, where they could change the Earth’s climate.