Atmosphere 2014, 5(2), 230-251; doi:10.3390/atmos5020230
Article

Mercury Speciation at a Coastal Site in the Northern Gulf of Mexico: Results from the Grand Bay Intensive Studies in Summer 2010 and Spring 2011

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Received: 28 February 2014; in revised form: 12 April 2014 / Accepted: 14 April 2014 / Published: 29 April 2014
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Atmospheric Mercury)
This is an open access article distributed under the Creative Commons Attribution License which permits unrestricted use, distribution, and reproduction in any medium, provided the original work is properly cited.
Abstract: During two intensive studies in summer 2010 and spring 2011, measurements of mercury species including gaseous elemental mercury (GEM), gaseous oxidized mercury (GOM), and particulate-bound mercury (PBM), trace chemical species including O3, SO2, CO, NO, NOY, and black carbon, and meteorological parameters were made at an Atmospheric Mercury Network (AMNet) site at the Grand Bay National Estuarine Research Reserve (NERR) in Moss Point, Mississippi. Surface measurements indicate that the mean mercury concentrations were 1.42 ± 0.12 ng∙m−3 for GEM, 5.4 ± 10.2 pg∙m−3 for GOM, and 3.1 ± 1.9 pg∙m−3 for PBM during the summer 2010 intensive and 1.53 ± 0.11 ng∙m−3 for GEM, 5.3 ± 10.2 pg∙m−3 for GOM, and 5.7 ± 6.2 pg∙m−3 for PBM during the spring 2011 intensive. Elevated daytime GOM levels (>20 pg∙m−3) were observed on a few days in each study and were usually associated with either elevated O3 (>50 ppbv), BrO, and solar radiation or elevated SO2 (>a few ppbv) but lower O3 (~20–40 ppbv). This behavior suggests two potential sources of GOM: photochemical oxidation of GEM and direct emissions of GOM from nearby local sources. Lack of correlation between GOM and Beryllium-7 (7Be) suggests little influence on surface GOM from downward mixing of GOM from the upper troposphere. These data were analyzed using the HYSPLIT back trajectory model and principal component analysis in order to develop source-receptor relationships for mercury species in this coastal environment. Trajectory frequency analysis shows that high GOM events were generally associated with high frequencies of the trajectories passing through the areas with high mercury emissions, while low GOM levels were largely associated the trajectories passing through relatively clean areas. Principal component analysis also reveals two main factors: direct emission and photochemical processes that were clustered with high GOM and PBM. This study indicates that the receptor site, which is located in a coastal environment of the Gulf of Mexico, experienced impacts from mercury sources that are both local and regional in nature.
Keywords: atmospheric mercury; gaseous elemental mercury; gaseous oxidized mercury; particulate-bound mercury; Gulf of Mexico; principal component analysis; HYSPLIT
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MDPI and ACS Style

Ren, X.; Luke, W.T.; Kelley, P.; Cohen, M.; Ngan, F.; Artz, R.; Walker, J.; Brooks, S.; Moore, C.; Swartzendruber, P.; Bauer, D.; Remeika, J.; Hynes, A.; Dibb, J.; Rolison, J.; Krishnamurthy, N.; Landing, W.M.; Hecobian, A.; Shook, J.; Huey, L.G. Mercury Speciation at a Coastal Site in the Northern Gulf of Mexico: Results from the Grand Bay Intensive Studies in Summer 2010 and Spring 2011. Atmosphere 2014, 5, 230-251.

AMA Style

Ren X, Luke WT, Kelley P, Cohen M, Ngan F, Artz R, Walker J, Brooks S, Moore C, Swartzendruber P, Bauer D, Remeika J, Hynes A, Dibb J, Rolison J, Krishnamurthy N, Landing WM, Hecobian A, Shook J, Huey LG. Mercury Speciation at a Coastal Site in the Northern Gulf of Mexico: Results from the Grand Bay Intensive Studies in Summer 2010 and Spring 2011. Atmosphere. 2014; 5(2):230-251.

Chicago/Turabian Style

Ren, Xinrong; Luke, Winston T.; Kelley, Paul; Cohen, Mark; Ngan, Fong; Artz, Richard; Walker, Jake; Brooks, Steve; Moore, Christopher; Swartzendruber, Phil; Bauer, Dieter; Remeika, James; Hynes, Anthony; Dibb, Jack; Rolison, John; Krishnamurthy, Nishanth; Landing, William M.; Hecobian, Arsineh; Shook, Jeffery; Huey, L. G. 2014. "Mercury Speciation at a Coastal Site in the Northern Gulf of Mexico: Results from the Grand Bay Intensive Studies in Summer 2010 and Spring 2011." Atmosphere 5, no. 2: 230-251.


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