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Wintertime Residential Biomass Burning in Las Vegas, Nevada; Marker Components and Apportionment Methods

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Sonoma Technology Inc., 1455 N. McDowell Blvd., Suite D, Petaluma, CA 94954, USA
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Department of Atmospheric Science, Colorado State University, Fort Collins, CO 80523, USA
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Department of Environmental Science, Hankuk University of Foreign Studies, Yongin 427-010, Korea
*
Author to whom correspondence should be addressed.
Academic Editor: Rebecca Sheesley
Atmosphere 2016, 7(4), 58; https://doi.org/10.3390/atmos7040058
Received: 8 January 2016 / Revised: 20 March 2016 / Accepted: 11 April 2016 / Published: 19 April 2016
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Air Quality and Source Apportionment)
We characterized residential biomass burning contributions to fine particle concentrations via multiple methods at Fyfe Elementary School in Las Vegas, Nevada, during January 2008: with levoglucosan on quartz fiber filters; with water soluble potassium (K+) measured using a particle-into-liquid system with ion chromatography (PILS-IC); and with the fragment C2H4O2+ from an Aerodyne High Resolution Aerosol Mass Spectrometer (HR-AMS). A Magee Scientific Aethalometer was also used to determine aerosol absorption at the UV (370 nm) and black carbon (BC, 880 nm) channels, where UV-BC difference is indicative of biomass burning (BB). Levoglucosan and AMS C2H4O2+ measurements were strongly correlated (r2 = 0.92); K+ correlated well with C2H4O2+ (r2 = 0.86) during the evening but not during other times. While K+ may be an indicator of BB, it is not necessarily a unique tracer, as non-BB sources appear to contribute significantly to K+ and can change from day to day. Low correlation was seen between UV-BC difference and other indicators, possibly because of an overwhelming influence of freeway emissions on BC concentrations. Given the sampling location—next to a twelve-lane freeway—urban-scale biomass burning was found to be a surprisingly large source of aerosol: overnight BB organic aerosol contributed between 26% and 33% of the organic aerosol mass. View Full-Text
Keywords: biomass burning; organic aerosol; black carbon; levoglucosan; Las Vegas; source apportionment; aerosol mass spectrometer; elementary school biomass burning; organic aerosol; black carbon; levoglucosan; Las Vegas; source apportionment; aerosol mass spectrometer; elementary school
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Brown, S.G.; Lee, T.; Roberts, P.T.; Collett, J.L. Wintertime Residential Biomass Burning in Las Vegas, Nevada; Marker Components and Apportionment Methods. Atmosphere 2016, 7, 58.

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