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    ACTRIS ACSM intercomparison - Part 1: Reproducibility of concentration and fragment results from 13 individual Quadrupole Aerosol Chemical Speciation Monitors (Q-ACSM) and consistency with co-located instruments
    (München : European Geopyhsical Union, 2015) Crenn, V.; Sciare, J.; Croteau, P.L.; Verlhac, S.; Fröhlich, R.; Belis, C.A.; Aas, W.; Äijälä, M.; Alastuey, A.; Artiñano, B.; Baisnée, D.; Bonnaire, N.; Bressi, M.; Canagaratna, M.; Canonaco, F.; Carbone, C.; Cavalli, F.; Coz, E.; Cubison, M.J.; Esser-Gietl, J.K.; Green, D.C.; Gros, V.; Heikkinen, L.; Herrmann, H.; Lunder, C.; Minguillón, M.C.; Močnik, G.; O'Dowd, C.D.; Ovadnevaite, J.; Petit, J.-E.; Petralia, E.; Poulain, L.; Priestman, M.; Riffault, V.; Ripoll, A.; Sarda-Estève, R.; Slowik, J.G.; Setyan, A.; Wiedensohler, A.; Baltensperger, U.; Prévôt, A.S.H.; Jayne, J.T.; Favez, O.
    As part of the European ACTRIS project, the first large Quadrupole Aerosol Chemical Speciation Monitor (Q-ACSM) intercomparison study was conducted in the region of Paris for 3 weeks during the late-fall – early-winter period (November–December 2013). The first week was dedicated to the tuning and calibration of each instrument, whereas the second and third were dedicated to side-by-side comparison in ambient conditions with co-located instruments providing independent information on submicron aerosol optical, physical, and chemical properties. Near real-time measurements of the major chemical species (organic matter, sulfate, nitrate, ammonium, and chloride) in the non-refractory submicron aerosols (NR-PM1) were obtained here from 13 Q-ACSM. The results show that these instruments can produce highly comparable and robust measurements of the NR-PM1 total mass and its major components. Taking the median of the 13 Q-ACSM as a reference for this study, strong correlations (r2 > 0.9) were observed systematically for each individual Q-ACSM across all chemical families except for chloride for which three Q-ACSMs showing weak correlations partly due to the very low concentrations during the study. Reproducibility expanded uncertainties of Q-ACSM concentration measurements were determined using appropriate methodologies defined by the International Standard Organization (ISO 17025, 1999) and were found to be 9, 15, 19, 28, and 36 % for NR-PM1, nitrate, organic matter, sulfate, and ammonium, respectively. However, discrepancies were observed in the relative concentrations of the constituent mass fragments for each chemical component. In particular, significant differences were observed for the organic fragment at mass-to-charge ratio 44, which is a key parameter describing the oxidation state of organic aerosol. Following this first major intercomparison exercise of a large number of Q-ACSMs, detailed intercomparison results are presented, along with a discussion of some recommendations about best calibration practices, standardized data processing, and data treatment.
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    Relating particle hygroscopicity and CCN activity to chemical composition during the HCCT-2010 field campaign
    (München : European Geopyhsical Union, 2013) Wu, Z.J.; Poulain, L.; Henning, S.; Dieckmann, K.; Birmili, W.; Merkel, M.; van Pinxteren, D.; Spindler, G.; Müller, K.; Stratmann, F.; Herrmann, H.; Wiedensohler, A.
    Particle hygroscopic growth at 90% RH (relative humidity), cloud condensation nuclei (CCN) activity, and size-resolved chemical composition were concurrently measured in the Thüringer Wald mid-level mountain range in central Germany in the fall of 2010. The median hygroscopicity parameter values, κ, of 50, 75, 100, 150, 200, and 250 nm particles derived from hygroscopicity measurements are respectively 0.14, 0.14, 0.17, 0.21, 0.24, and 0.28 during the sampling period. The closure between HTDMA (Hygroscopicity Tandem Differential Mobility Analyzers)-measured (κHTDMA) and chemical composition-derived (κchem) hygroscopicity parameters was performed based on the Zdanovskii–Stokes–Robinson (ZSR) mixing rule. Using size-averaged chemical composition, the κ values are substantially overpredicted (30 and 40% for 150 and 100 nm particles). Introducing size-resolved chemical composition substantially improved closure. We found that the evaporation of NH4NO3, which may happen in a HTDMA system, could lead to a discrepancy in predicted and measured particle hygroscopic growth. The hygroscopic parameter of the organic fraction, κorg, is positively correlated with the O : C ratio (κorg = 0.19 × (O : C) − 0.03). Such correlation is helpful to define the κorg value in the closure study. κ derived from CCN measurement was around 30% (varied with particle diameters) higher than that determined from particle hygroscopic growth measurements (here, hydrophilic mode is considered only). This difference might be explained by the surface tension effects, solution non-ideality, gas-particle partitioning of semivolatile compounds, and the partial solubility of constituents or non-dissolved particle matter. Therefore, extrapolating from HTDMA data to properties at the point of activation should be done with great care. Finally, closure study between CCNc (cloud condensation nucleus counter)-measured (κCCN) and chemical composition (κCCN, chem) was performed using CCNc-derived κ values for individual components. The results show that the κCCN can be well predicted using particle size-resolved chemical composition and the ZSR mixing rule.
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    Diurnal variations of ambient particulate wood burning emissions and their contribution to the concentration of Polycyclic Aromatic Hydrocarbons (PAHs) in Seiffen, Germany
    (München : European Geopyhsical Union, 2011) Poulain, L.; Iinuma, Y.; Müller, K.; Birmili, W.; Weinhold, K.; Brüggemann, E.; Gnauk, T.; Hausmann, A.; Löschau, G.; Wiedensohler, A.; Herrmann, H.
    Residential wood burning is becoming an increasingly important cause of air quality problems since it has become a popular source of alternative energy to fossil fuel. In order to characterize the contribution of residential wood burning to local particle pollution, a field campaign was organized at the village of Seiffen (Saxony, Germany). During this campaign, an Aerosol Mass Spectrometer (AMS) was deployed in parallel to a PM1 high volume filter sampler. The AMS mass spectra were analyzed using Positive Matrix Factorization (PMF) to obtain detailed information about the organic aerosol (OA). Biomass-burning organic aerosol (BBOA), Hydrocarbon-like organic aerosol (HOA), and Oxygenated Organic Aerosol (OOA) were identified and represented 20%, 17% and 62% of total OA, respectively. Additionally, Polycyclic Aromatic Hydrocarbons (PAH) were measured by the AMS with an average concentration of 10 ng m−3 and short term events of extremely high PAH concentration (up to 500 ng m−3) compared to the mean PAH value were observed during the whole measurement period. A comparison with the results from PM1 filter samples showed that the BBOA factor and the AMS PAH are good indicators of the total concentration of the different monosaccharide anhydrides and PAH measured on the filter samples. Based on its low correlation with CO and the low car traffic, the HOA factor was considered to be related to residential heating using liquid fuel. An influence of the time of the week (week vs. weekend) on the diurnal profiles of the different OA components was observed. The weekdays were characterized by two maxima; a first one early in the morning and a stronger one in the evening. During the weekend days, the different OA components principally reached only one maximum in the afternoon. Finally, the PAH emitted directly from residential wood combustion was estimated to represent 1.5% of the total mass of the BBOA factor and around 62% of the total PAH concentration measured at Seiffen. This result highlights the important contribution of residential wood combustion to air quality and PAH emissions at the sampling place, which might have a significant impact on human health. Moreover, it also emphasizes the need for a better time resolution of the chemical characterization of toxic particulate compounds in order to provide more information on variations of the different sources through the days as well as to better estimate the real human exposure.
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    Seasonal and diurnal variations of particulate nitrate and organic matter at the IfT research station Melpitz
    (München : European Geopyhsical Union, 2011) Poulain, L.; Spindler, G.; Birmili, W.; Plass-Dülmer, C.; Weinhold, K.; Wiedensohler, A.; Herrmann, H.
    Ammonium nitrate and several organic compounds such as dicarboxylic acids (e.g. succinic acid, glutaric acid), some Polycyclic Aromatic Hydrocarbon (PAHs) or some n-alkanes are semi-volatile. The transition of these compounds between the gas and particulate phase may significantly change the aerosol particles radiative properties, the heterogeneous chemical properties, and, naturally, the total particulate mass concentration. To better assess these time-dependent effects, three intensive field experiments were conducted in 2008–2009 at the Central European EMEP research station Melpitz (Germany) using an Aerodyne Aerosol Mass Spectrometer (AMS). Data from all seasons highlight organic matter as being the most important particulate fraction of PM1 in summer (59%) while in winter, the nitrate fraction was more prevalent (34.4%). The diurnal variation of nitrate always showed the lowest concentration during the day while its concentration increased during the night. This night increase of nitrate concentration was higher in winter (ΔNO3− = 3.6 μg m−3) than in summer (ΔNO3− = 0.7 μg m−3). The variation in particulate nitrate was inherently linked to the gas-to-particle-phase equilibrium of ammonium nitrate and the dynamics of the atmosphere during day. The results of this study suggest that during summer nights, the condensation of HNO3 and NH3 on pre-existing particles represents the most prevalent source of nitrate, whereas during winter, nighttime chemistry is the predominant source of nitrate. During the summer 2008's campaign, a clear diurnal evolution in the oxidation state of the organic matter became evident (Organic Mass to Organic Carbon ratio (OM/OC) ranging from 1.65 during night to 1.80 during day and carbon oxidation state (OSc) from −0.66 to −0.4), which could be correlated to hydroxyl radical (OH) and ozone concentrations, indicating a photochemical transformation process. In summer, the organic particulate matter seemed to be heavily influenced by regional secondary formation and transformation processes, facilitated by photochemical production processes as well as a diurnal cycling of the substances between the gas and particulate phase. In winter, these processes were obviously less pronounced (OM/OC ranging from 1.60 to 1.67 and OSc from −0.8 to −0.7), so that organic matter apparently originated mainly from aged particles and long range transport.
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    Sources and mixing state of size-resolved elemental carbon particles in a European megacity: Paris
    (München : European Geopyhsical Union, 2012) Healy, R.M.; Sciare, J.; Poulain, L.; Kamili, K.; Merkel, M.; Müller, T.; Wiedensohler, A.; Eckhardt, S.; Stohl, A.; Sarda-Estève, R.; McGillicuddy, E.; O'Connor, I.P.; Sodeau, J.R.; Wenger, J.C.
    An Aerosol Time-Of-Flight Mass Spectrometer (ATOFMS) was deployed to investigate the size-resolved chemical composition of single particles at an urban background site in Paris, France, as part of the MEGAPOLI winter campaign in January/February 2010. ATOFMS particle counts were scaled to match coincident Twin Differential Mobility Particle Sizer (TDMPS) data in order to generate hourly size-resolved mass concentrations for the single particle classes observed. The total scaled ATOFMS particle mass concentration in the size range 150–1067 nm was found to agree very well with the sum of concurrent High-Resolution Time-of-Flight Aerosol Mass Spectrometer (HR-ToF-AMS) and Multi-Angle Absorption Photometer (MAAP) mass concentration measurements of organic carbon (OC), inorganic ions and black carbon (BC) (R2 = 0.91). Clustering analysis of the ATOFMS single particle mass spectra allowed the separation of elemental carbon (EC) particles into four classes: (i) EC attributed to biomass burning (ECbiomass), (ii) EC attributed to traffic (ECtraffic), (iii) EC internally mixed with OC and ammonium sulfate (ECOCSOx), and (iv) EC internally mixed with OC and ammonium nitrate (ECOCNOx). Average hourly mass concentrations for EC-containing particles detected by the ATOFMS were found to agree reasonably well with semi-continuous quantitative thermal/optical EC and optical BC measurements (r2 = 0.61 and 0.65–0.68 respectively, n = 552). The EC particle mass assigned to fossil fuel and biomass burning sources also agreed reasonably well with BC mass fractions assigned to the same sources using seven-wavelength aethalometer data (r2 = 0.60 and 0.48, respectively, n = 568). Agreement between the ATOFMS and other instrumentation improved noticeably when a period influenced by significantly aged, internally mixed EC particles was removed from the intercomparison. 88% and 12% of EC particle mass was apportioned to fossil fuel and biomass burning respectively using the ATOFMS data compared with 85% and 15% respectively for BC estimated from the aethalometer model. On average, the mass size distribution for EC particles is bimodal; the smaller mode is attributed to locally emitted, mostly externally mixed EC particles, while the larger mode is dominated by aged, internally mixed ECOCNOx particles associated with continental transport events. Periods of continental influence were identified using the Lagrangian Particle Dispersion Model (LPDM) "FLEXPART". A consistent minimum between the two EC mass size modes was observed at approximately 400 nm for the measurement period. EC particles below this size are attributed to local emissions using chemical mixing state information and contribute 79% of the scaled ATOFMS EC particle mass, while particles above this size are attributed to continental transport events and contribute 21% of the EC particle mass. These results clearly demonstrate the potential benefit of monitoring size-resolved mass concentrations for the separation of local and continental EC emissions. Knowledge of the relative input of these emissions is essential for assessing the effectiveness of local abatement strategies.
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    Hygroscopic properties of the Paris urban aerosol in relation to its chemical composition
    (München : European Geopyhsical Union, 2014) Kamilli, K.A.; Poulain, L.; Held, A.; Nowak, A.; Birmili, W.; Wiedensohler, A.
    Aerosol hygroscopic growth factors and chemical properties were measured as part of the MEGAPOLI "Megacities Plume Case Study" at the urban site Laboratoire d'Hygiène de la Ville de Paris (LHVP) in the city center of Paris from June to August 2009, and from January to February 2010. Descriptive hygroscopic growth factors (DGF) were derived in the diameter range from 25 to 350 nm at relative humidities of 30, 55, 75, and 90% by applying the summation method on humidified and dry aerosol size distributions measured simultaneously with a humidified differential mobility particle sizer (HDMPS) and a twin differential mobility particle sizer (TDMPS). For 90% relative humidity, the DGF varied from 1.06 to 1.46 in summer, and from 1.06 to 1.66 in winter. Temporal variations in the observed mean DGF could be well explained with a simple growth model based on the aerosol chemical composition measured by aerosol mass spectrometry (AMS) and black carbon photometry (MAAP). In particular, good agreement was observed when sulfate was the predominant inorganic factor. A clear overestimation of the predicted growth factor was found when the nitrate mass concentration exceeded values of 10 μg m−3, e.g., during winter.
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    Organic aerosol concentration and composition over Europe: Insights from comparison of regional model predictions with aerosol mass spectrometer factor analysis
    (München : European Geopyhsical Union, 2014) Fountoukis, C.; Megaritis, A.G.; Skyllakou, K.; Charalampidis, P.E.; Pilinis, C.; van der Gon, H.A.C. Denier; Crippa, M.; Canonaco, F.; Mohr, C.; Prévôt, A.S.H.; Allan, J.D.; Poulain, L.; Petäjä, T.; Tiitta, P.; Carbone, S.; Kiendler-Scharr, A.; Nemitz, E.; O'Dowd, C.; Swietlicki, E.; Pandis, S.N.
    A detailed three-dimensional regional chemical transport model (Particulate Matter Comprehensive Air Quality Model with Extensions, PMCAMx) was applied over Europe, focusing on the formation and chemical transformation of organic matter. Three periods representative of different seasons were simulated, corresponding to intensive field campaigns. An extensive set of AMS measurements was used to evaluate the model and, using factor-analysis results, gain more insight into the sources and transformations of organic aerosol (OA). Overall, the agreement between predictions and measurements for OA concentration is encouraging, with the model reproducing two-thirds of the data (daily average mass concentrations) within a factor of 2. Oxygenated OA (OOA) is predicted to contribute 93% to total OA during May, 87% during winter and 96% during autumn, with the rest consisting of fresh primary OA (POA). Predicted OOA concentrations compare well with the observed OOA values for all periods, with an average fractional error of 0.53 and a bias equal to −0.07 (mean error = 0.9 μg m−3, mean bias = −0.2 μg m−3). The model systematically underpredicts fresh POA at most sites during late spring and autumn (mean bias up to −0.8 μg m−3). Based on results from a source apportionment algorithm running in parallel with PMCAMx, most of the POA originates from biomass burning (fires and residential wood combustion), and therefore biomass burning OA is most likely underestimated in the emission inventory. The sensitivity of POA predictions to the corresponding emissions' volatility distribution is discussed. The model performs well at all sites when the Positive Matrix Factorization (PMF)-estimated low-volatility OOA is compared against the OA with saturation concentrations of the OA surrogate species C* ≤ 0.1 μg m−3 and semivolatile OOA against the OA with C* > 0.1 μg m−3.