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Bruns E.A.,Paul Scherrer Institute | Krapf M.,Paul Scherrer Institute | Orasche J.,Helmholtz Center Munich | Orasche J.,University of Rostock | And 12 more authors.
Atmospheric Chemistry and Physics | Year: 2015

Residential wood burning contributes to the total atmospheric aerosol burden; however, large uncertainties remain in the magnitude and characteristics of wood burning products. Primary emissions are influenced by a variety of parameters, including appliance type, burner wood load and wood type. In addition to directly emitted particles, previous laboratory studies have shown that oxidation of gas-phase emissions produces compounds with sufficiently low volatility to readily partition to the particles, forming considerable quantities of secondary organic aerosol (SOA). However, relatively little is known about wood burning SOA, and the effects of burn parameters on SOA formation and composition are yet to be determined. There is clearly a need for further study of primary and secondary wood combustion aerosols to advance our knowledge of atmospheric aerosols and their impacts on health, air quality and climate. For the first time, smog chamber experiments were conducted to investigate the effects of wood loading on both primary and secondary wood combustion products. Products were characterized using a range of particle- and gas-phase instrumentation, including an aerosol mass spectrometer (AMS). A novel approach for polycyclic aromatic hydrocarbon (PAH) quantification from AMS data was developed and results were compared to those from GC-MS analysis of filter samples. Similar total particle mass emission factors were observed under high and average wood loadings; however, high fuel loadings were found to generate significantly higher contributions of PAHs to the total organic aerosol (OA) mass compared to average loadings. PAHs contributed 15 ± 4% (mean ±2 sample standard deviations) to the total OA mass in high-load experiments, compared to 4 ± 1% in average-load experiments. With aging, total OA concentrations increased by a factor of 3 ± 1 for high load experiments compared to 1.6 ± 0.4 for average-load experiments. In the AMS, an increase in PAH and aromatic signature ions at lower m/z values, likely fragments from larger functionalized PAHs, was observed with aging. Filter samples also showed an increase in functionalized PAHs in the particles with aging, particularly oxidized naphthalene species. As PAHs and their oxidation products are known to have deleterious effects on health, this is a noteworthy finding to aid in the mitigation of negative wood burning impacts by improving burner operation protocols. © Author(s) 2015. Source

Dragan G.C.,Helmholtz Center Munich | Dragan G.C.,University of Rostock | Breuer D.,Institute for Occupational Safety and Health Alte | Blaskowitz M.,Institute for Occupational Safety and Health Alte | And 10 more authors.
Environmental Sciences: Processes and Impacts | Year: 2015

Semi-volatile (SV) aerosols still represent an important challenge to occupational hygienists due to toxicological and sampling issues. Particularly problematic is the sampling of hazardous SV that are present in both particulate and vapour phases at a workplace. In this study we investigate the potential evaporation losses of SV aerosols when using off-line filter-adsorber personal samplers. Furthermore, we provide experimental data showing the extent of the evaporation loss that can bias the workplace risk assessment. An experimental apparatus consisting of an aerosol generator, a flow tube and an aerosol monitoring and sampling system was set up inside a temperature controlled chamber. Aerosols from three n-alkanes were generated, diluted with nitrogen and sampled using on-line and off-line filter-adsorber methods. Parallel measurements using the on-line and off-line methods were conducted to quantify the bias induced by filter sampling. Additionally, two mineral oils of different volatility were spiked on filters and monitored for evaporation depending on the samplers flow rate. No significant differences between the on-line and off-line methods were detected for the sum of particles and vapour. The filter-adsorber method however tended to underestimate up to 100% of the particle mass, especially for the more volatile compounds and lower concentrations. The off-line sampling method systematically returned lower particle and higher vapour values, an indication for particle evaporation losses. We conclude that using only filter sampling for the assessment of semi-volatiles may considerably underestimate the presence of the particulate phase due to evaporation. Thus, this underestimation can have a negative impact on the occupational risk assessment if the evaporated particle mass is no longer quantified. This journal is © The Royal Society of Chemistry 2015. Source

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