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Ho Chi Minh City, Vietnam

Hien P.D.,Vietnam Atomic Energy Agency | Loc P.D.,National Hydro Meteorological Center | Dao N.V.,National Hydro Meteorological Center
Science of the Total Environment | Year: 2011

A dozen multi-day pollution episodes occur from October to February in Hanoi, Vietnam due to prolonged anticyclonic conditions established after the northeast monsoon surges (cold surges). These winter pollution episodes (WPEs) account for most of the 24-h PM 10 exceedances and the highest concentrations of gaseous pollutants in Hanoi. In this study, WPEs were investigated using continuous air quality monitoring data and information on upper-air soundings and air mass trajectories. The 24-h pollutant concentrations are lowest during cold surges; concurrently rise thereafter reaching the highest levels toward the middle of a monsoon cycle, then decline ahead of the next cold surge. Each monsoon cycle usually proceeds through a dry phase and a humid phase as Asiatic continental cold air arrives in Hanoi through inland China then via the East China Sea. WPEs are associated with nighttime radiation temperature inversions (NRTIs) in the dry phase and subsidence temperature inversions (STIs) in the humid phase. In NRTI periods, the rush hour pollution peak is more pronounced in the evening than in the morning and the pollution level is about two times higher at night than in daytime. In STI periods, broad morning and evening traffic peaks are observed and pollution is as high at night as in daytime. The close association between pollution and winter monsoon meteorology found in this study for the winter 2003-04 may serve as a basis for advance warning of WPEs and for forecasting the 24-h pollutant concentrations. © 2011 Elsevier B.V. Source

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