Special Issue "Air Quality and Sources Apportionment"

A special issue of Atmosphere (ISSN 2073-4433). This special issue belongs to the section "Air Quality".

Deadline for manuscript submissions: closed (31 March 2019)

Special Issue Editors

Guest Editor
Dr. Fulvio Amato

IDAEA-CSIC - Spanish Research Council, Barcelona, Spain
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Interests: air quality; source apportionment; traffic emissions; atmospheric geochemistry
Guest Editor
Prof. Philip K. Hopke

Clarkson University, Potsdam, NY, USA
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Guest Editor
Prof. Xavier Querol

IDAEA-CSIC - Spanish Research Council, Barcelona, Spain
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Interests: air pollution; air quality; climate change; environmental geochemistry

Special Issue Information

Dear Colleagues,

Concerns regarding poor ambient air quality are increasing worldwide due to their significant impacts on public health, climate, and ecosystem protection. Although significant improvements have been achieved during the last decades, many regions of the world still face air pollution levels well above WHO guidelines and some pollutants pose real technological and political challenges for public health protection. Source apportionment methods are useful tools to identify major pollution emission sectors to prioritize economic and policy efforts and should also be used to demonstrate effectiveness of mitigation measures. Special attention should be paid to the relative uncertainty of source apportionment outputs. Innovative methods are emerging coupling emission characterization, activity data, wind and trajectory information to better understand the primary sources, pollutant formation processes, and geographical origins of pollutants. Moreover, innovative instrumentations offer higher measurement resolution in time, particle size, and speciation. In this Special Issue, we seek to publish innovative papers investigating the source apportionment of criteria and other health relevant pollutants with special attention to particle mass and number, nitrogen oxides, black carbon, and ozone at urban, industrial, and rural environments. Papers dealing with different source apportionment approaches such as receptor modelling, source oriented modelling, and emission inventories are welcome, as well as papers analyzing the effectiveness of mitigation measures.

Routine receptor modelling studies are out of the scope of this Special Issue unless they are performed in regions of special interests.

Dr. Fulvio Amato
Prof. Philip K. Hopke
Prof. Xavier Querol
Guest Editors

Manuscript Submission Information

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Keywords

  • PM speciation
  • Receptor models
  • Source oriented models
  • Emission inventories
  • Aethalometer model
  • Advanced and expanded models
  • Mitigation strategies
  • High time resolution
  • Tracer analysis
  • Radiocarbon
  • Ozone
  • Nitrogen oxides

Published Papers (4 papers)

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Research

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Open AccessArticle Evaluation of Tire Wear Contribution to PM2.5 in Urban Environments
Atmosphere 2019, 10(2), 99; https://doi.org/10.3390/atmos10020099
Received: 8 January 2019 / Revised: 19 February 2019 / Accepted: 19 February 2019 / Published: 23 February 2019
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Abstract
Vehicle-related particulate matter (PM) emissions may arise from both exhaust and non-exhaust mechanisms, such as brake wear, tire wear, and road pavement abrasion, each of which may be emitted directly and indirectly through resuspension of settled road dust. Several researchers have indicated that [...] Read more.
Vehicle-related particulate matter (PM) emissions may arise from both exhaust and non-exhaust mechanisms, such as brake wear, tire wear, and road pavement abrasion, each of which may be emitted directly and indirectly through resuspension of settled road dust. Several researchers have indicated that the proportion of PM2.5 attributable to vehicle traffic will increasingly come from non-exhaust sources. Currently, very little empirical data is available to characterize tire and road wear particles (TRWP) in the PM2.5 fraction. As such, this study was undertaken to quantify TRWP in PM2.5 at roadside locations in urban centers including London, Tokyo and Los Angeles, where vehicle traffic is an important contributor to ambient air PM. The samples were analyzed using validated chemical markers for tire tread polymer based on a pyrolysis technique. Results indicated that TRWP concentrations in the PM2.5 fraction were low, with averages ranging from < 0.004 to 0.10 µg/m3, representing an average contribution to total PM2.5 of 0.27%. The TRWP levels in PM2.5 were significantly different between the three cities, with significant differences between London and Los Angeles and Tokyo and Los Angeles. There was no significant correlation between TRWP in PM2.5 and traffic count. This study provides an initial dataset to understand potential human exposure to airborne TRWP and the potential contribution of this non-exhaust emission source to total PM2.5. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Air Quality and Sources Apportionment)
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Open AccessArticle Long-Term Changes of Source Apportioned Particle Number Concentrations in a Metropolitan Area of the Northeastern United States
Atmosphere 2019, 10(1), 27; https://doi.org/10.3390/atmos10010027
Received: 20 November 2018 / Revised: 4 January 2019 / Accepted: 9 January 2019 / Published: 12 January 2019
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Abstract
The northeastern United States has experienced significant emissions reductions in the last two decades leading to a decrease in PM2.5, major gaseous pollutants (SO2, CO, NOx) and ultrafine particles (UFPs) concentrations. Emissions controls were implemented for coal-fired [...] Read more.
The northeastern United States has experienced significant emissions reductions in the last two decades leading to a decrease in PM2.5, major gaseous pollutants (SO2, CO, NOx) and ultrafine particles (UFPs) concentrations. Emissions controls were implemented for coal-fired power plants, and new heavy-duty diesel trucks were equipped with particle traps and NOx control systems, and ultralow sulfur content is mandatory for both road and non-road diesel as well as residual oil for space heating. At the same time, economic changes also influenced the trends in air pollutants. Investigating the influence of these changes on ultrafine particle sources is fundamental to determine the success of the mitigation strategies and to plan future actions. Particle size distributions have been measured in Rochester, NY since January 2002. The particle sources were investigated with positive matrix factorization (PMF) of the size distributions (11–470 nm) and measured criteria pollutants during five periods (2002–2003, 2004–2007, 2008–2010, 2011–2013, and 2014–2016) and three seasons (winter, summer, and transition). Monthly, weekly, and hourly source contributions patterns were evaluated. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Air Quality and Sources Apportionment)
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Graphical abstract

Open AccessArticle Source Apportionment of PM2.5 during Haze and Non-Haze Episodes in Wuxi, China
Atmosphere 2018, 9(7), 267; https://doi.org/10.3390/atmos9070267
Received: 20 May 2018 / Revised: 22 June 2018 / Accepted: 12 July 2018 / Published: 16 July 2018
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Abstract
Chemical characteristics of fine particulate matter (PM2.5) in Wuxi at urban, industrial, and clean sites on haze and non-haze days were investigated over four seasons in 2016. In this study, high concentrations of fine particulate matter (107.6 ± 25.3 μg/m3 [...] Read more.
Chemical characteristics of fine particulate matter (PM2.5) in Wuxi at urban, industrial, and clean sites on haze and non-haze days were investigated over four seasons in 2016. In this study, high concentrations of fine particulate matter (107.6 ± 25.3 μg/m3) were measured in haze episodes. The most abundant chemical components were organic matter (OM), SO42−, NO3, elemental carbon (EC), and NH4+, which varied significantly on haze and non-haze days. The concentrations of OM and EC were 38.5 ± 5.4 μg/m3 and 12.3 ± 2.1 μg/m3 on haze days, which were more than four times greater than those on non-haze days. Source apportionment using a chemical mass balance (CMB) model showed that the dominant sources were secondary sulfate (17.7%), secondary organic aerosols (17.1%), and secondary nitrate (14.2%) during the entire sampling period. The source contribution estimates (SCEs) of most sources at clean sites were lower than at urban and industrial sites. Primary industrial emission sources, such as coal combustion and steel smelting, made larger contributions at industrial sites, while vehicle exhausts and cooking smoke showed higher contributions at urban sites. In addition, the SCEs of secondary sulfate, secondary nitrate, and secondary organic aerosols on haze days were much higher than those on non-haze days, indicating that the secondary particulate matter formations process was the dominating reason for high concentrations of particles on haze days. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Air Quality and Sources Apportionment)
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Review

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Open AccessReview Comparison of Measurement-Based Methodologies to Apportion Secondary Organic Carbon (SOC) in PM2.5: A Review of Recent Studies
Atmosphere 2018, 9(11), 452; https://doi.org/10.3390/atmos9110452
Received: 21 September 2018 / Revised: 8 November 2018 / Accepted: 11 November 2018 / Published: 16 November 2018
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Abstract
Secondary organic aerosol (SOA) is known to account for a major fraction of airborne particulate matter, with significant impacts on air quality and climate at the global scale. Despite the substantial amount of research studies achieved during these last decades, the source apportionment [...] Read more.
Secondary organic aerosol (SOA) is known to account for a major fraction of airborne particulate matter, with significant impacts on air quality and climate at the global scale. Despite the substantial amount of research studies achieved during these last decades, the source apportionment of the SOA fraction remains difficult due to the complexity of the physicochemical processes involved. The selection and use of appropriate approaches are a major challenge for the atmospheric science community. Several methodologies are nowadays available to perform quantitative and/or predictive assessments of the SOA amount and composition. This review summarizes the current knowledge on the most commonly used approaches to evaluate secondary organic carbon (SOC) contents: elemental carbon (EC) tracer method, chemical mass balance (CMB), SOA tracer method, radiocarbon (14C) measurement and positive matrix factorization (PMF). The principles, limitations, challenges and good practices of each of these methodologies are discussed in the present article. Based on a comprehensive—although not exhaustive—review of research papers published during the last decade (2006–2016), SOC estimates obtained using these methodologies are also summarized for different regions across the world. Conclusions of some studies which are directly comparing the performances of different methodologies are then specifically discussed. An overall picture of SOC contributions and concentrations obtained worldwide for urban sites under similar conditions (i.e., geographical and seasonal ones) is also proposed here. Finally, further needs to improve SOC apportionment methodologies are also identified and discussed. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Air Quality and Sources Apportionment)
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Graphical abstract

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