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Chemical Characterization of Summertime Dust Events at Kanpur: Insight into the Sources and Level of Mixing with Anthropogenic Emissions

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Volume: 14 | Issue: 3 | Pages: 879-891
DOI: 10.4209/aaqr.2013.07.0240
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Subhasish Ghosh1, Tarun Gupta 1, Nikhil Rastogi1, Abhishek Gaur1, Amit Misra1, Sachchida N. Tripathi1, Debajyoti Paul Paul1, Vinod Tare1, Om Prakash1, Deepika Bhattu1, Anubhav K. Dwivedi1, Daya S. Kaul1, Rosalin Dalai1, Sumit K. Mishra2

  • 1 Department of Civil Engineering, Indian Institute of Technology Kanpur, (null), India
  • 2 National Physical Laboratory, New Delhi, India


The aim of this study conducted at Kanpur (26.51°N, 80.23°E), India, was to quantify chemical properties of dust and the intensity of mixing, due to its interaction with various emissions from anthropogenic activities, during its long range transport. Aerosol mass was collected at Indian Institute of Technology, Kanpur (IIT-K) located in the Indo-Gangetic Plain from April–July 2011, a period marked by intense dust storms and onset of monsoon. The sampling days were classified as Dust, Polluted Dust1 (PD1), Polluted Dust2 (PD2) and Continental days. PM10 (coarse mode) and PM2.5 (fine mode) collected on filter substrates were analysed for chemical composition. Elemental concentrations were measured using Inductively Coupled Plasma-Optical Emission Spectroscopy (ICP-OES). The results show that crustal elements like Ca, Fe, K, Na and Mg were dominant in coarse mode during dusty days, whereas, elements of anthropogenic origin like Cu, Ni, Se and V were mostly concentrated in fine mode during PD1 as well as PD2. Very low elemental concentrations were found during continental days. SO42–, Cl and NO3 were found to be high during PD1 and PD2 days. Very good correlations of NH4+ with Cl and SO42– ions in PD1 days indicate their common sources of origin and formation of ammonium chloride and ammonium sulphate. Water Soluble Inorganic Carbon (WSIC) was found during all dust days, Water Soluble Organic Carbon (WSOC) was found to be highest during PD1 and PD2 days.


Mixing Enrichment factor WSOC WSIC PM2.5

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