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Volume 12, No. 6, December 2012, Pages 1181-1188 PDF(685 KB)  
doi: 10.4209/aaqr.2011.11.0223   

Real-Time Characterization of Particle-Bound Polycyclic Aromatic Hydrocarbons at a Heavily Trafficked Roadside Site

Yan Cheng1,2,3, Kin Fai Ho4, Wen Jing Wu1, Steven Sai Hang Ho2,5, Shun Cheng Lee3, Yu Huang3, Yun Wei Zhang1, Pui Shan Yau3, Yuan Gao3, Chi Sing Chan4

1 Department of Environmental Science and Technology, School of Human Settlements and Civil Engineering, Xi’an Jiaotong University, No.28 Xianning West Road, Xi'an, Shaanxi, 710049, China
2 SKLLQG, Institute of Earth and Environment, CAS, Xi’an, Shaanxi, 710075, China
3 Department of Civil and Structural Engineering, Research Center for Environmental Technology and Management, The Hong Kong Polytechnic University, Hung Hom, Kowloon, Hong Kong, China
4 School of Public Health and Primary Care, The Chinese University of Hong Kong, Hong Kong, China
5 Division of Atmospheric Sciences, Desert Research Institute, Reno, NV 89512, USA




A continuous photo-electric aerosol sensor (PAS) was used to characterize the particle-bound polycyclic aromatic hydrocarbons (p-PAHs) content at a heavily trafficked roadside site in Hong Kong. The measurements at the roadside station were performed for nine months from January to September 2005. For the total quantified p-PAHs, the PAS output shows good correlations to the data obtained with the offline quartz-fiber aerosol filter collection method. The average concentration of corrected p-PAHs was 5.3 ± 3.7 ng/m3, ranging from 0.2 to 22.0 ng/m3. The p-PAHs concentrations increased in the daytime in accordance with the heavy amount of road traffic, and decreased in the nighttime due to less traffic. Hourly p-PAHs concentrations had high correlation coefficients with all goods vehicles (> 0.9) and large buses (~0.8), showing that diesel vehicle emissions are the primary source of p-PAHs. The day-to-day variation of p-PAHs is significant, because it was influenced by various factors (e.g., traffic levels, mixing height, and potential pollution sources).



Keywords: Polycyclic aromatic compound; PAS; Black carbon; Roadside measurement.



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