Mass size distributions of water-soluble inorganic and organic ions in size-segregated aerosols over metropolitan Newark in the US east coast

Yunliang Zhao, Yuan Gao

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79 Scopus citations

Abstract

To characterize the mass size distributions of water-soluble inorganic and organic ions associated with urban particulate matter, a total of 15 sets of size-segregated aerosol samples were collected by a 10-stage Micro-Orifice Uniform Deposit Impactor (MOUDI) in the urban area of Newark in New Jersey from July to December 2006. The mass concentrations of PM1.8 accounted for ∼68% of the mass concentrations of PM10. The mass concentrations of the total water-soluble ions in PM1.8 accounted for 31-81% of the mass concentrations of PM1.8. Sulfate was the dominant ion in fine particles, accounting for 31% of the PM1.8 mass with its dominant mode at 0.32-0.56 μm throughout all the samples. Nitrate size distributions were bi-modal, peaking at 0.32-0.56 and 3.2-5.6 μm, and the shift of the nitrate dominant fraction between fine and coarse modes was affected by temperature. The ratios of nitrate to PM1.8 varied significantly, 0.5-27%. The C2-C4 dicarboxylic acids accounted for 1.9±0.9% of PM1.8 mass, with oxalate being the dominant ion. The size distributions of oxalate exhibited two to four modes with the dominant one at 0.32-0.56 μm. Chloride existed in both coarse and fine modes, suggesting the influence of sea-salt aerosol and anthropogenic emissions. A crucial formation mechanism for the mass size distributions of these ions observed at this location is likely to be a combination of the gas-to-particle conversion and in-cloud/fog processing.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)4063-4078
Number of pages16
JournalAtmospheric Environment
Volume42
Issue number18
DOIs
StatePublished - Jun 2008

All Science Journal Classification (ASJC) codes

  • Environmental Science(all)
  • Atmospheric Science

Keywords

  • Dicarboxylic acids
  • Mass size distributions
  • Nitrate
  • Sulfate
  • Urban aerosols

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