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Formation Mechanisms for Secondary Organic Aerosol in Ambient Air

By Environmental Protection Agency

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Book Id: WPLBN0000115322
Format Type: PDF eBook
File Size: 0.6 MB
Reproduction Date: 2007
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Title: Formation Mechanisms for Secondary Organic Aerosol in Ambient Air  
Author: Environmental Protection Agency
Language: English
Subject: Ecology, Natural resource issues, Environemtal protection
Collections: Environmental Awareness Library Collection
Publication Date:
Publisher: United States Environmental Protection Agency


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Agency, E. P. (n.d.). Formation Mechanisms for Secondary Organic Aerosol in Ambient Air. Retrieved from

Excerpt: Abstract. An integrated laboratory and field research program is underway at the National Exposure Research Laboratory to characterize organic carbon in PM2.5 formed through chemical reactions. Information from this study will provide critical data needed to improve the treatment of secondary organic aerosol (SOA) formation in the Community Multiscale Air Quality (CMAQ) model. In the laboratory portion, SOA-producing hydrocarbon precursors are irradiated in a smog chamber in the presence of NOX and SO2. Identifiable organic compounds are formed indicative of the precursors which are then compared to field study samples to ensure that relevant chemical systems are being studied. In collaboration with the California Institute of Technology and the University of Antwerp, analytical methods and instruments are used to identify the products. Collaborative efforts are also underway with the Atmospheric Modeling Division of the NERL to incorporate findings from the field and laboratory measurements to improve the treatment of SOA within CMAQ. The project results should provide the Office of Air Quality Planning and Standards with critical data on important regulatory issues, among them (1) contributions of each SOA precursor to the PM2.5 concentration, (2) relative contributions of anthropogenic and biogenic hydrocarbons to ambient SOA concentrations, and (3) impacts of SO2 reductions on SOA formation. This information will improve the treatment of SOA in the CMAQ model and help states evaluate control strategies for reducing ambient PM2.5. These results will support effective regulations and information that improves public health and reduces ecological impacts.

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