Editorial Board Members' Collection Series: Aerosol Particles

A special issue of Toxics (ISSN 2305-6304). This special issue belongs to the section "Air Pollution and Health".

Deadline for manuscript submissions: closed (25 March 2024) | Viewed by 8223

Special Issue Editors


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Guest Editor
Helmholtz-Zentrum Geesthacht, Geesthacht, Germany
Interests: modeling of chemistry and transport of atmospheric pollutants; urban air quality; development of emission control scenarios; transformation of particles in the atmosphere via aerosol dynamics and chemical processes
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Guest Editor
School of Environment, Harbin Institute of Technology, Harbin 150090, China
Interests: aerosol measurement techniques; characteristics, sources, and formation mechanisms of atmospheric particulate matter pollution
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Guest Editor
Division of Environmental Health & Risk Management, School of Geography, Earth & Environmental Sciences, University of Birmingham, Edgbaston, Birmingham B15 2TT, UK
Interests: air pollution; aerosol science; particulate matter; environmental health

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Guest Editor
Department of Atmospheric and Oceanic Sciences, University of California at Los Angeles, Los Angeles, CA 90095-1565, USA
Interests: air pollution; aerosol science; atmospheric monitoring; environmental health; transition metals; antioxidant chemistry

Special Issue Information

Dear Colleagues,

Aerosol particles play a prominent role in several major societal challenges, such as developing sustainable cities, producing clean energy, and reducing climate impact. The mass concentration of atmospheric aerosol particles (PM) has been systematically used in epidemiological studies as an indicator of exposure to air pollutants, connecting PM concentrations with a wide variety of human health effects. The smallest size fraction of PM, ultrafine particles, can penetrate deep into the lungs, crossing from the alveoli into the blood stream where they can circulate in the human body. The effects of particles on health are difficult to explain via one single parameter, mainly because aerosol particles are formed by a complex mixture of chemicals. Modeling techniques such as computational fluid dynamics, chemistry transport models, and machine learning systems can be used to quantify their spatiotemporal trends and to assess the potential for adverse outcomes. For an effective management and reduction in particle pollution, more measurement and modeling studies are needed that characterize emissions, especially from unregulated combustion sources, and processes controlling the fate and evolution of particle size distributions in the atmosphere.

We solicit manuscripts addressing emission sources, atmospheric transformation, and dispersion of aerosol particles in this Special Issue on this topic. Exposure assessment, aerosol chemistry and toxicology, and environmental studies are topics of interest in this Special Issue. Both research articles and reviews on the methodological aspects and on specific applications are welcome. Atmospheric studies of primary and secondary organic aerosols, particle-bound toxins such as transition metals, and their related oxidative potential are of specific interest due to their importance for understanding the health impacts of particles.

We look forward to receiving your contributions.

Dr. Matthias Karl
Prof. Dr. Yuan Cheng
Prof. Dr. Roy Harrison
Prof. Dr. Suzanne E. Paulson
Guest Editors

Manuscript Submission Information

Manuscripts should be submitted online at www.mdpi.com by registering and logging in to this website. Once you are registered, click here to go to the submission form. Manuscripts can be submitted until the deadline. All submissions that pass pre-check are peer-reviewed. Accepted papers will be published continuously in the journal (as soon as accepted) and will be listed together on the special issue website. Research articles, review articles as well as short communications are invited. For planned papers, a title and short abstract (about 100 words) can be sent to the Editorial Office for announcement on this website.

Submitted manuscripts should not have been published previously, nor be under consideration for publication elsewhere (except conference proceedings papers). All manuscripts are thoroughly refereed through a single-blind peer-review process. A guide for authors and other relevant information for submission of manuscripts is available on the Instructions for Authors page. Toxics is an international peer-reviewed open access monthly journal published by MDPI.

Please visit the Instructions for Authors page before submitting a manuscript. The Article Processing Charge (APC) for publication in this open access journal is 2600 CHF (Swiss Francs). Submitted papers should be well formatted and use good English. Authors may use MDPI's English editing service prior to publication or during author revisions.

Keywords

  • atmospheric aerosols
  • aerosol toxicity
  • haze pollution
  • ultrafine particles
  • aerosol chemistry
  • source apportionment
  • dispersion modeling
  • exposure assessment

Published Papers (5 papers)

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Research

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17 pages, 2094 KiB  
Article
Do Surface Charges on Polymeric Filters and Airborne Particles Control the Removal of Nanoscale Aerosols by Polymeric Facial Masks?
by Zhaobo Zhang, Mahmut S. Ersan, Paul Westerhoff and Pierre Herckes
Toxics 2024, 12(1), 3; https://doi.org/10.3390/toxics12010003 - 19 Dec 2023
Viewed by 1356
Abstract
The emergence of facial masks as a critical health intervention to prevent the spread of airborne disease and protect from occupational nanomaterial exposure highlights the need for fundamental insights into the interaction of nanoparticles (<200 nm) with modern polymeric mask filter materials. While [...] Read more.
The emergence of facial masks as a critical health intervention to prevent the spread of airborne disease and protect from occupational nanomaterial exposure highlights the need for fundamental insights into the interaction of nanoparticles (<200 nm) with modern polymeric mask filter materials. While most research focuses on the filtration efficiency of airborne particles by facial masks based on pore sizes, pressure drop, or humidity, only a few studies focus on the importance of aerosol surface charge versus filter surface charge and their role in the net particle filtration efficiency of mask filters. In this study, experiments were conducted to assess mask filter filtration efficiency using positively and negatively charged polystyrene particles (150 nm) as challenge aerosols at varying humidity levels. Commercial masks with surface potential (Ψf) in the range of −10 V to −800 V were measured by an electrostatic voltmeter and used for testing. Results show that the mask filtration efficiency is highly dependent on the mask surface potential as well as the charge on the challenge aerosol, ranging from 60% to 98%. Eliminating the surface charge results in a maximum 43% decrease in filtration efficiency, emphasizing the importance of electrostatic charge interactions during the particle capture process. Moreover, increased humidity can decrease the surface charge on filters, thereby decreasing the mask filtration efficiency. The knowledge gained from this study provides insight into the critical role of electrostatic attraction in nanoparticle capture mechanisms and benefits future occupational and environmental health studies. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Editorial Board Members' Collection Series: Aerosol Particles)
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31 pages, 7587 KiB  
Article
Measurement and Modeling of Ship-Related Ultrafine Particles and Secondary Organic Aerosols in a Mediterranean Port City
by Matthias Karl, Martin Otto Paul Ramacher, Sonia Oppo, Ludovic Lanzi, Elisa Majamäki, Jukka-Pekka Jalkanen, Grazia Maria Lanzafame, Brice Temime-Roussel, Lise Le Berre and Barbara D’Anna
Toxics 2023, 11(9), 771; https://doi.org/10.3390/toxics11090771 - 11 Sep 2023
Cited by 2 | Viewed by 1145
Abstract
Maritime transport emerges as a major source of ultrafine particle (UFP) pollution in coastal regions with consequences for the health of people living in port cities. Inhalation of UFPs can cause inflammation and oxidative stress, which are starting points for further diseases. In [...] Read more.
Maritime transport emerges as a major source of ultrafine particle (UFP) pollution in coastal regions with consequences for the health of people living in port cities. Inhalation of UFPs can cause inflammation and oxidative stress, which are starting points for further diseases. In addition to primary particles, secondary organic aerosol (SOA) may form through the photo-oxidation of volatile organic compounds emitted in ship exhaust. The characterization of size-segregated and chemical properties of particles is essential for assessing the health implications related to shipping. We applied a coupled regional–local chemistry transport modeling system to study the effects of ship emissions on atmospheric concentrations of UFP and SOA in the Mediterranean port city Marseille (France), which is characterized by the combination of high port activity, industrialized emissions, and active photochemistry in summer. Our results show that the average potential impact from local shipping in the port area was 6–9% for SOA and 27–51% for total particle number concentration in July 2020. The estimated oxidative potential of daily mean particulate organic matter related to shipping was lower than the oxidative potential reported for heavy fuel oil (HFO). The lower oxidative potential in this study is very likely due to the low share of ships using HFO during stopover. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Editorial Board Members' Collection Series: Aerosol Particles)
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16 pages, 1993 KiB  
Article
Occurrence, Sources, and Health Risks of Polycyclic Aromatic Hydrocarbons in Road Environments from Harbin, a Megacity of China
by Jin-Nong Li, Ye Zhang, Jian-Xin Wang, Hang Xiao, Anatoly Nikolaev, Yi-Fan Li, Zi-Feng Zhang and Zhong-Hua Tang
Toxics 2023, 11(8), 695; https://doi.org/10.3390/toxics11080695 - 11 Aug 2023
Cited by 3 | Viewed by 1397
Abstract
To obtain a comprehensive understanding about that occurrence, sources, and effects on human health of polycyclic aromatic hydrocarbons (PAHs) in road environmental samples from Harbin, concentrations of 32 PAHs in road dust, green belt soil, and parking lot dust samples were quantified. The [...] Read more.
To obtain a comprehensive understanding about that occurrence, sources, and effects on human health of polycyclic aromatic hydrocarbons (PAHs) in road environmental samples from Harbin, concentrations of 32 PAHs in road dust, green belt soil, and parking lot dust samples were quantified. The total PAH concentrations ranged from 0.95 to 40.7 μg/g and 0.39 to 43.9 μg/g in road dust and green belt soil, respectively, and were dominated by high molecular weight PAHs (HMW-PAHs). Despite the content of PAHs in arterial roads being higher, the composition profile of PAHs was hardly influenced by road types. For parking lot dust, the range of total PAH concentrations was 0.81–190 μg/g, and three-ring to five-ring PAHs produced the maximum contribution. Compared with surface parking lots (mean: 6.12 μg/g), higher total PAH concentrations were detected in underground parking lots (mean: 33.1 μg/g). The diagnostic ratios of PAHs showed that petroleum, petroleum combustion, and biomass/coal combustion were major sources of PAHs in the samples. Furthermore, according to the Incremental Lifetime Cancer Risk model, the cancer risks of three kinds of samples for adults and children were above the threshold (10−6). Overall, this study demonstrated that PAHs in the road environment of Harbin have a certain health impact on local citizens. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Editorial Board Members' Collection Series: Aerosol Particles)
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21 pages, 5725 KiB  
Article
Spatial Distribution, Sources, Air–Soil Exchange, and Health Risks of Parent PAHs and Derivative-Alkylated PAHs in Different Functional Areas of an Oilfield Area in the Yellow River Delta, North China
by Xiongfei Zhang, Anan Qi, Pengcheng Wang, Qi Huang, Tong Zhao, Caiqing Yan, Lingxiao Yang and Wenxing Wang
Toxics 2023, 11(6), 540; https://doi.org/10.3390/toxics11060540 - 17 Jun 2023
Cited by 4 | Viewed by 1525
Abstract
The knowledge of the spatial distribution, sources, and air–soil exchange of polycyclic aromatic compounds (PACs) in an oilfield area is essential to the development of effective control practices of PAC pollution. In this study, 48 passive air samples and 24 soil samples were [...] Read more.
The knowledge of the spatial distribution, sources, and air–soil exchange of polycyclic aromatic compounds (PACs) in an oilfield area is essential to the development of effective control practices of PAC pollution. In this study, 48 passive air samples and 24 soil samples were collected during 2018–2019 in seven functional areas (e.g., urban, oil field, suburban, industrial, agricultural, near pump units, and background) in the Yellow River Delta (YRD) where the Shengli Oilfield is located, and 18 parent polycyclic aromatic hydrocarbons (PAHs) and five alkylated-PAHs (APAHs) were analyzed from all the air and soil samples. The ΣPAHs in the air and soil ranged from 2.26 to 135.83 ng/m3 and 33.96 to 408.94 ng/g, while the ΣAPAHs in the atmosphere and soil ranged from 0.04 to 16.31 ng/m3 and 6.39 to 211.86 ng/g, respectively. There was a downward trend of atmospheric ΣPAH concentrations with increasing the distance from the urban area, while both ΣPAH and ΣAPAH concentrations in the soil decreased with distance from the oilfield area. PMF analyses show that for atmospheric PACs, coal/biomass combustion was the main contributor in urban, suburban, and agricultural areas, while crude production and processing source contributes more in the industrial and oilfield area. For PACs in soil, densely populated areas (industrial, urban, and suburban) are more affected by traffic sources, while oilfield and near-pump unit areas are under the impact of oil spills. The fugacity fraction (ff) results indicated that the soil generally emitted low-molecular-weight PAHs and APAHs and act as a sink for high-molecular-weight PAHs. The incremental lifetime cancer risk (ILCR) of Σ(PAH+APAH) in both the air and soil, were below the threshold (≤10−6) set by the US EPA. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Editorial Board Members' Collection Series: Aerosol Particles)
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Review

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41 pages, 3243 KiB  
Review
The Measurement of Atmospheric Black Carbon: A Review
by Zhiqing Zhang, Yuan Cheng, Linlin Liang and Jiumeng Liu
Toxics 2023, 11(12), 975; https://doi.org/10.3390/toxics11120975 - 1 Dec 2023
Cited by 2 | Viewed by 1988
Abstract
Black Carbon (BC), the second-largest contributor to global warming, has detrimental effects on human health and the environment. However, the accurate quantification of BC poses a significant challenge, impeding the comprehensive assessment of its impacts. Therefore, this paper aims to critically review three [...] Read more.
Black Carbon (BC), the second-largest contributor to global warming, has detrimental effects on human health and the environment. However, the accurate quantification of BC poses a significant challenge, impeding the comprehensive assessment of its impacts. Therefore, this paper aims to critically review three quantitative methods for measuring BC: Thermal Optical Analysis (TOA), the Optical Method, and Laser-Induced Incandescence (LII). The determination principles, available commercial instruments, sources of deviation, and correction approaches associated with these techniques are systematically discussed. By synthesizing and comparing the quantitative results reported in previous studies, this paper aims to elucidate the underlying relationships and fundamental disparities among Elemental Carbon (EC), Equivalent Black Carbon (eBC), and Refractory Black Carbon (rBC). Finally, based on the current advancements in BC quantification, recommendations are proposed to guide future research directions. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Editorial Board Members' Collection Series: Aerosol Particles)
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