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    Identification and source attribution of organic compounds in ultrafine particles near Frankfurt International Airport
    (Katlenburg-Lindau : European Geosciences Union, 2021) Ungeheuer, Florian; van Pinxteren, Dominik; Vogel, Alexander L.
    Analysing the composition of ambient ultrafine particles (UFPs) is a challenging task due to the low mass and chemical complexity of small particles, yet it is a prerequisite for the identification of particle sources and the assessment of potential health risks. Here, we show the molecular characterization of UFPs, based on cascade impactor (Nano-MOUDI) samples that were collected at an air quality monitoring station near one of Europe's largest airports, in Frankfurt, Germany. At this station, particle-size-distribution measurements show an enhanced number concentration of particles smaller than 50 nm during airport operating hours. We sampled the lower UFP fraction (0.010-0.018, 0.018-0.032, 0.032-0.056 classCombining double low lineinline-formula/m) when the air masses arrived from the airport. We developed an optimized filter extraction procedure using ultra-high-performance liquid chromatography (UHPLC) for compound separation and a heated electrospray ionization (HESI) source with an Orbitrap high-resolution mass spectrometer (HRMS) as a detector for organic compounds. A non-Target screening detected classCombining double low lineinline-formulag1/4200/ organic compounds in the UFP fraction with sample-To-blank ratios larger than 5. We identified the largest signals as homologous series of pentaerythritol esters (PEEs) and trimethylolpropane esters (TMPEs), which are base stocks of aircraft lubrication oils. We unambiguously attribute the majority of detected compounds to jet engine lubrication oils by matching retention times, high-resolution and accurate mass measurements, and comparing tandem mass spectrometry (MS classCombining double low lineinline-formula2/) fragmentation patterns between both ambient samples and commercially available jet oils. For each UFP stage, we created molecular fingerprints to visualize the complex chemical composition of the organic fraction and their average carbon oxidation state. These graphs underline the presence of the homologous series of PEEs and TMPEs and the appearance of jet oil additives (e.g.Tricresyl phosphate, TCP). Targeted screening of TCP confirmed the absence of the harmful tri-iortho/i isomer, while we identified a thermal transformation product of TMPE-based lubrication oil (trimethylolpropane phosphate, TMP-P). Even though a quantitative determination of the identified compounds is limited, the presented method enables the qualitative detection of molecular markers for jet engine lubricants in UFPs and thus strongly improves the source apportionment of UFPs near airports./p. © 2021 BMJ Publishing Group. All rights reserved.
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    Ice-nucleating particle concentrations unaffected by urban air pollution in Beijing, China
    (Katlenburg-Lindau : EGU, 2018) Chen, Jie; Wu, Zhijun; Augustin-Bauditz, Stefanie; Grawe, Sarah; Hartmann, Markus; Pei, Xiangyu; Liu, Zirui; Ji, Dongsheng; Wex, Heike
    Exceedingly high levels of PM2.5 with complex chemical composition occur frequently in China. It has been speculated whether anthropogenic PM2.5 may significantly contribute to ice-nucleating particles (INP). However, few studies have focused on the ice-nucleating properties of urban particles. In this work, two ice-nucleating droplet arrays have been used to determine the atmospheric number concentration of INP (NINP) in the range from -6 to -25 °C in Beijing. No correlations between NINP and either PM2.5 or black carbon mass concentrations were found, although both varied by more than a factor of 30 during the sampling period. Similarly, there were no correlations between NINP and either total particle number concentration or number concentrations for particles with diameters > 500 nm. Furthermore, there was no clear difference between day and night samples. All these results indicate that Beijing air pollution did not increase or decrease INP concentrations in the examined temperature range above values observed in nonurban areas; hence, the background INP concentrations might not be anthropogenically influenced as far as urban air pollution is concerned, at least in the examined temperature range.
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    Annual variability of ice-nucleating particle concentrations at different Arctic locations
    (Göttingen : Copernicus GmbH, 2019) Wex, H.; Huang, L.; Zhang, W.; Hung, H.; Traversi, R.; Becagli, S.; Sheesley, R.J.; Moffett, C.E.; Barrett, T.E.; Bossi, R.; Skov, H.; Hünerbein, A.; Lubitz, J.; Löffler, M.; Linke, O.; Hartmann, M.; Herenz, P.; Stratmann, F.
    Number concentrations of ice-nucleating particles (NINP) in the Arctic were derived from ground-based filter samples. Examined samples had been collected in Alert (Nunavut, northern Canadian archipelago on Ellesmere Island), Utqiagvik, formerly known as Barrow (Alaska), Nyalesund (Svalbard), and at the Villum Research Station (VRS; northern Greenland). For the former two stations, examined filters span a full yearly cycle. For VRS, 10 weekly samples, mostly from different months of one year, were included. Samples from Ny-Alesund were collected during the months from March until September of one year. At all four stations, highest concentrations were found in the summer months from roughly June to September. For those stations with sufficient data coverage, an annual cycle can be seen. The spectra of NINP observed at the highest temperatures, i.e., those obtained for summer months, showed the presence of INPs that nucleate ice up to-5 °C. Although the nature of these highly ice-active INPs could not be determined in this study, it often has been described in the literature that ice activity observed at such high temperatures originates from the presence of ice-active material of biogenic origin. Spectra observed at the lowest temperatures, i.e., those derived for winter months, were on the lower end of the respective values from the literature on Arctic INPs or INPs from midlatitude continental sites, to which a comparison is presented herein. An analysis concerning the origin of INPs that were ice active at high temperatures was carried out using back trajectories and satellite information. Both terrestrial locations in the Arctic and the adjacent sea were found to be possible source areas for highly active INPs.
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    Atmospheric new particle formation at the research station Melpitz, Germany: Connection with gaseous precursors and meteorological parameters
    (Katlenburg-Lindau : EGU, 2018) Größ, Johannes; Hamed, Amar; Sonntag, André; Spindler, Gerald; Manninen, Hanna Elina; Nieminen, Tuomo; Kulmala, Markku; Hõrrak, Urmas; Plass-Dülmer, Christian; Wiedensohler, Alfred; Birmili, Wolfram
    This paper revisits the atmospheric new particle formation (NPF) process in the polluted Central European troposphere, focusing on the connection with gas-phase precursors and meteorological parameters. Observations were made at the research station Melpitz (former East Germany) between 2008 and 2011 involving a neutral cluster and air ion spectrometer (NAIS). Particle formation events were classified by a new automated method based on the convolution integral of particle number concentration in the diameter interval 2-20 nm. To study the relevance of gaseous sulfuric acid as a precursor for nucleation, a proxy was derived on the basis of direct measurements during a 1-month campaign in May 2008. As a major result, the number concentration of freshly produced particles correlated significantly with the concentration of sulfur dioxide as the main precursor of sulfuric acid. The condensation sink, a factor potentially inhibiting NPF events, played a subordinate role only. The same held for experimentally determined ammonia concentrations. The analysis of meteorological parameters confirmed the absolute need for solar radiation to induce NPF events and demonstrated the presence of significant turbulence during those events. Due to its tight correlation with solar radiation, however, an independent effect of turbulence for NPF could not be established. Based on the diurnal evolution of aerosol, gas-phase, and meteorological parameters near the ground, we further conclude that the particle formation process is likely to start in elevated parts of the boundary layer rather than near ground level.
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    Long-range and local air pollution: What can we learn from chemical speciation of particulate matter at paired sites?
    (Katlenburg-Lindau : EGU, 2020) Pandolfi, Marco; Mooibroek, Dennis; Hopke, Philip; van Pinxteren, Dominik; Querol, Xavier; Herrmann, Hartmut; Alastuey, Andrés; Favez, Olivier; Hüglin, Christoph; Perdrix, Esperanza; Riffault, Véronique; Sauvage, Stéphane; van der Swaluw, Eric; Tarasova, Oksana; Colette, Augustin
    Here we report results of a detailed analysis of the urban and non-urban contributions to particulate matter (PM) concentrations and source contributions in five European cities, namely Schiedam (the Netherlands, NL), Lens (France, FR), Leipzig (Germany, DE), Zurich (Switzerland, CH) and Barcelona (Spain, ES). PM chemically speciated data from 12 European paired monitoring sites (one traffic, five urban, five regional and one continental background) were analysed by positive matrix factorisation (PMF) and Lenschow's approach to assign measured PM and source contributions to the different spatial levels. Five common sources were obtained at the 12 sites: sulfate-rich (SSA) and nitrate-rich (NSA) aerosols, road traffic (RT), mineral matter (MM), and aged sea salt (SS). These sources explained from 55 % to 88 % of PM mass at urban low-traffic-impact sites (UB) depending on the country. Three additional common sources were identified at a subset of sites/countries, namely biomass burning (BB) (FR, CH and DE), explaining an additional 9 %-13 % of PM mass, and residual oil combustion (V-Ni) and primary industrial (IND) (NL and ES), together explaining an additional 11 %-15 % of PM mass. In all countries, the majority of PM measured at UB sites was of a regional+continental (R+C) nature (64 %-74 %). The R+C PM increments due to anthropogenic emissions in DE, NL, CH, ES and FR represented around 66 %, 62 %, 52 %, 32 % and 23 %, respectively, of UB PM mass. Overall, the R+C PM increments due to natural and anthropogenic sources showed opposite seasonal profiles with the former increasing in summer and the latter increasing in winter, even if exceptions were observed. In ES, the anthropogenic R+C PM increment was higher in summer due to high contributions from regional SSA and V-Ni sources, both being mostly related to maritime shipping emissions at the Spanish sites. Conversely, in the other countries, higher anthropogenic R+C PM increments in winter were mostly due to high contributions from NSA and BB regional sources during the cold season. On annual average, the sources showing higher R+C increments were SSA (77 %-91 % of SSA source contribution at the urban level), NSA (51 %-94 %), MM (58 %-80 %), BB (42 %-78 %) and IND (91 % in NL). Other sources showing high R+C increments were photochemistry and coal combustion (97 %-99 %; identified only in DE). The highest regional SSA increment was observed in ES, especially in summer, and was related to ship emissions, enhanced photochemistry and peculiar meteorological patterns of the Western Mediterranean. The highest R+C and urban NSA increments were observed in NL and associated with high availability of precursors such as NOx and NH3. Conversely, on average, the sources showing higher local increments were RT (62 %-90 % at all sites) and V-Ni (65 %-80 % in ES and NL). The relationship between SSA and V-Ni indicated that the contribution of ship emissions to the local sulfate concentrations in NL has strongly decreased since 2007 thanks to the shift from high-sulfur-to low-sulfur-content fuel used by ships. An improvement of air quality in the five cities included here could be achieved by further reducing local (urban) emissions of PM, NOx and NH3 (from both traffic and non-traffic sources) but also SO2 and PM (from maritime ships and ports) and giving high relevance to non-urban contributions by further reducing emissions of SO2 (maritime shipping) and NH3 (agriculture) and those from industry, regional BB sources and coal combustion. © 2020 Copernicus GmbH. All rights reserved.
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    Chemical composition and droplet size distribution of cloud at the summit of Mount Tai, China
    (Katlenburg-Lindau : EGU, 2017) Li, Jiarong; Wang, Xinfeng; Chen, Jianmin; Zhu, Chao; Li, Weijun; Li, Chengbao; Liu, Lu; Xu, Caihong; Wen, Liang; Xue, Likun; Wang, Wenxing; Ding, Aijun; Herrmann, Hartmut
    The chemical composition of 39 cloud samples and droplet size distributions in 24 cloud events were investigated at the summit of Mt. Tai from July to October 2014. Inorganic ions, organic acids, metals, HCHO, H2O2, sulfur( IV), organic carbon, and elemental carbon as well as pH and electrical conductivity were analyzed. The acidity of the cloud water significantly decreased from a reported value of pH 3.86 during 2007-2008 (Guo et al., 2012) to pH 5.87 in the present study. The concentrations of nitrate and ammonium were both increased since 2007-2008, but the overcompensation of ammonium led to an increase in the mean pH value. The microphysical properties showed that cloud droplets were smaller than 26.0 μm and most were in the range of 6.0-9.0 μm at Mt. Tai. The maximum droplet number concentration (Nd) was associated with a droplet size of 7.0 μm. High liquid water content (LWC) values could facilitate the formation of larger cloud droplets and broadened the droplet size distribution. Cloud droplets exhibited a strong interaction with atmospheric aerosols. Higher PM2.5 levels resulted in higher concentrations of water-soluble ions and smaller sizes with increased numbers of cloud droplets. The lower pH values were likely to occur at higher PM2.5 concentrations. Clouds were an important sink for soluble materials in the atmosphere. The dilution effect of cloud water should be considered when estimating concentrations of soluble components in the cloud phase.
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    No Evidence for a Significant Impact of Heterogeneous Chemistry on Radical Concentrations in the North China Plain in Summer 2014
    (Columbus, Ohio : American Chemical Society, 2020) Tan, Zhaofeng; Hofzumahaus, Andreas; Lu, Keding; Brown, Steven S.; Holland, Frank; Huey, Lewis Gregory; Kiendler-Scharr, Astrid; Li, Xin; Liu, Xiaoxi; Ma, Nan; Min, Kyung-Eun; Rohrer, Franz; Shao, Min; Wahner, Andreas; Wang, Yuhang; Wiedensohler, Alfred; Wu, Yusheng; Wu, Zhijun; Zeng, Limin; Zhang, Yuanhang; Fuchs, Hendrik
    The oxidation of nitric oxide to nitrogen dioxide by hydroperoxy (HO2) and organic peroxy radicals (RO2) is responsible for the chemical net ozone production in the troposphere and for the regeneration of hydroxyl radicals, the most important oxidant in the atmosphere. In Summer 2014, a field campaign was conducted in the North China Plain, where increasingly severe ozone pollution has been experienced in the last years. Chemical conditions in the campaign were representative for this area. Radical and trace gas concentrations were measured, allowing for calculating the turnover rates of gas-phase radical reactions. Therefore, the importance of heterogeneous HO2 uptake on aerosol could be experimentally determined. HO2 uptake could have suppressed ozone formation at that time because of the competition with gas-phase reactions that produce ozone. The successful reduction of the aerosol load in the North China Plain in the last years could have led to a significant decrease of HO2 loss on particles, so that ozone-forming reactions could have gained importance in the last years. However, the analysis of the measured radical budget in this campaign shows that HO2 aerosol uptake did not impact radical chemistry for chemical conditions in 2014. Therefore, reduced HO2 uptake on aerosol since then is likely not the reason for the increasing number of ozone pollution events in the North China Plain, contradicting conclusions made from model calculations reported in the literature. © 2020 American Chemical Society.
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    A European aerosol phenomenology - 6: Scattering properties of atmospheric aerosol particles from 28 ACTRIS sites
    (Katlenburg-Lindau : EGU, 2018) Pandolfi, Marco; Alados-Arboledas, Lucas; Alastuey, Andrés; Andrade, Marcos; Angelov, Christo; Artiñano, Begoña; Backman, John; Baltensperger, Urs; Bonasoni, Paolo; Bukowiecki, Nicolas; Collaud Coen, Martine; Conil, Sébastien; Coz, Esther; Crenn, Vincent; Dudoitis, Vadimas; Ealo, Marina; Eleftheriadis, Kostas; Favez, Olivier; Fetfatzis, Prodromos; Fiebig, Markus; Flentje, Harald; Ginot, Patrick; Gysel, Martin; Henzing, Bas; Hoffer, Andras; Holubova Smejkalova, Adela; Kalapov, Ivo; Kalivitis, Nikos; Kouvarakis, Giorgos; Kristensson, Adam; Kulmala, Markku; Lihavainen, Heikki; Lunder, Chris; Luoma, Krista; Lyamani, Hassan; Marinoni, Angela; Mihalopoulos, Nikos; Moerman, Marcel; Nicolas, José; O'Dowd, Colin; Petäjä, Tuukka; Petit, Jean-Eudes; Pichon, Jean Marc; Prokopciuk, Nina; Putaud, Jean-Philippe; Rodríguez, Sergio; Sciare, Jean; Sellegri, Karine; Swietlicki, Erik; Titos, Gloria; Tuch, Thomas; Tunved, Peter; Ulevicius, Vidmantas; Vaishya, Aditya; Vana, Milan; Virkkula, Aki; Vratolis, Stergios; Weingartner, Ernest; Wiedensohler, Alfred; Laj, Paolo
    This paper presents the light-scattering properties of atmospheric aerosol particles measured over the past decade at 28 ACTRIS observatories, which are located mainly in Europe. The data include particle light scattering (σsp) and hemispheric backscattering (σbsp) coefficients, scattering Ångström exponent (SAE), backscatter fraction (BF) and asymmetry parameter (g). An increasing gradient of σsp is observed when moving from remote environments (arctic/mountain) to regional and to urban environments. At a regional level in Europe, σsp also increases when moving from Nordic and Baltic countries and from western Europe to central/eastern Europe, whereas no clear spatial gradient is observed for other station environments. The SAE does not show a clear gradient as a function of the placement of the station. However, a west-to-east-increasing gradient is observed for both regional and mountain placements, suggesting a lower fraction of fine-mode particle in western/south-western Europe compared to central and eastern Europe, where the fine-mode particles dominate the scattering. The g does not show any clear gradient by station placement or geographical location reflecting the complex relationship of this parameter with the physical properties of the aerosol particles. Both the station placement and the geographical location are important factors affecting the intraannual variability. At mountain sites, higher σsp and SAE values are measured in the summer due to the enhanced boundary layer influence and/or new particle-formation episodes. Conversely, the lower horizontal and vertical dispersion during winter leads to higher σsp values at all low-altitude sites in central and eastern Europe compared to summer. These sites also show SAE maxima in the summer (with corresponding g minima). At all sites, both SAE and g show a strong variation with aerosol particle loading. The lowest values of g are always observed together with low σsp values, indicating a larger contribution from particles in the smaller accumulation mode. During periods of high σsp values, the variation of g is less pronounced, whereas the SAE increases or decreases, suggesting changes mostly in the coarse aerosol particle mode rather than in the fine mode. Statistically significant decreasing trends of σsp are observed at 5 out of the 13 stations included in the trend analyses. The total reductions of σsp are consistent with those reported for PM2.5 and PM10 mass concentrations over similar periods across Europe.
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    Molecular distributions of dicarboxylic acids, oxocarboxylic acids and α-dicarbonyls in PM2.5 collected at the top of Mt. Tai, North China, during the wheat burning season of 2014
    (Katlenburg-Lindau : EGU, 2018) Zhu, Yanhong; Yang, Lingxiao; Chen, Jianmin; Kawamura, Kimitaka; Sato, Mamiko; Tilgner, Andreas; van Pinxteren, Dominik; Chen, Ying; Xue, Likun; Wang, Xinfeng; Simpson, Isobel J.; Herrmann, Hartmut; Blake, Donald R.; Wang, Wenxing
    Fine particulate matter (PM2.5) samples collected at Mount (Mt.) Tai in the North China Plain during summer 2014 were analyzed for dicarboxylic acids and related compounds (oxocarboxylic acids and α-dicarbonyls) (DCRCs). The total concentration of DCRCs was 1050±580 and 1040±490ng m-3 during the day and night, respectively. Although these concentrations were about 2 times lower than similar measurements in 2006, the concentrations reported here were about 1-13 times higher than previous measurements in other major cities in the world. Molecular distributions of DCRCs revealed that oxalic acid (C2) was the dominant species (50%), followed by succinic acid (C4) (12%) and malonic acid (C3) (8%). WRF modeling revealed that Mt. Tai was mostly in the free troposphere during the campaign and long-range transport was a major factor governing the distributions of the measured compounds at Mt. Tai. A majority of the samples (79%) had comparable concentrations during the day and night, with their day-night concentration ratios between 0.9 and 1.1. Multi-day transport was considered an important reason for the similar concentrations. Correlation analyses of DCRCs and their gas precursors and between C2 and sulfate indicated precursor emissions and aqueous-phase oxidations during long-range transport also likely play an important role, especially during the night. Source identification indicated that anthropogenic activities followed by photochemical aging accounted for about 60% of the total variance and were the dominant source at Mt. Tai. However, biomass burning was only important during the first half of the measurement period. Measurements of potassium (K+) and DCRCs were about 2 times higher than those from the second half of the measurement period. The concentration of levoglucosan, a biomass burning tracer, decreased by about 80% between 2006 and 2014, indicating that biomass burning may have decreased between 2006 and 2014.
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    Nucleation of jet engine oil vapours is a large source of aviation-related ultrafine particles
    (London : Springer Nature, 2022) Ungeheuer, Florian; Caudillo, Lucía; Ditas, Florian; Simon, Mario; van Pinxteren, Dominik; Kılıç, Doğuşhan; Rose, Diana; Jacobi, Stefan; Kürten, Andreas; Curtius, Joachim; Vogel, Alexander L.
    Large airports are a major source of ultrafine particles, which spread across densely populated residential areas, affecting air quality and human health. Jet engine lubrication oils are detectable in aviation-related ultrafine particles, however, their role in particle formation and growth remains unclear. Here we show the volatility and new-particle-formation ability of a common synthetic jet oil, and the quantified oil fraction in ambient ultrafine particles downwind of Frankfurt International Airport, Germany. We find that the oil mass fraction is largest in the smallest particles (10-18 nm) with 21% on average. Combining ambient particle-phase concentration and volatility of the jet oil compounds, we determine a lower-limit saturation ratio larger than 1 × 105 for ultra-low volatility organic compounds. This indicates that the oil is an efficient nucleation agent. Our results demonstrate that jet oil nucleation is an important mechanism that can explain the abundant observations of high number concentrations of non-refractory ultrafine particles near airports.