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Characteristics and Source Apportionment of Volatile Organic Compounds for Different Functional Zones in a Coastal City of Southeast China

Category: Air Pollution and Health Effects

Accepted Manuscripts
DOI: 10.4209/aaqr.2018.04.0122
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Baoye Hu, Hui Xu, Junjun Deng, Zhigang Yi, Jinsheng Chen , Lingling Xu, Zhenyu Hong, Xiaoqiu Chen, Youwei Hong

  • 1 Center for Excellence in Regional Atmospheric Environment, Institute of Urban Environment, Chinese Academy of Sciences, Xiamen 361021, China
  • 2 Key Lab of Urban Environment and Health, Institute of Urban Environment, Chinese Academy of Sciences, Xiamen 361021, China
  • 3 University of Chinese Academy of Sciences, Beijing 100086, China
  • 4 China XinXing Construction & Development Co. Ltd., Beijing 100039, China
  • 5 Academy of Resource and Environment, Fujian Agriculture and Forestry University, Fuzhou 350002, China
  • 6 Environmental Monitoring Center of Fujian, Fuzhou 350003, China


Seasonal and spatial pattern of VOCs were investigated in Xiamen, China.
The PMF model was used to quantify the sources of VOCs in six functional zones.
VOCs characteristic ratios were used to evaluate the aging of VOCs.


chromatography-mass spectrometry (GC-MS). The annual average concentrations of total VOCs (TVOCs) were as follows: background site (36.00 µg m-3) < residential site (48.71 µg m-3) < port site (61.09 µg m-3) ~ development site (62.25 µg m-3) < traffic site (73.82 µg m-3) < industrial site (98.33 µg m-3). The concentrations of TVOCs in spring and summer were higher than those in autumn and winter. The ozone formation potentials (OFPs) were calculated, and the results indicated that 1-butene had the highest OFP in the residential zone, while toluene contributed most to the OFP in the other functional zones. The ratio of xylene to ethylbenzene was used to analyze the aging of atmospheric VOCs at the background site, which was affected by transport of air pollution from urban areas. Sources of VOCs were identified by the positive matrix factorization (PMF) model and included vehicle exhausts, fuel evaporation, biomass burning, industrial processes, and coal combustion. Vehicle exhaust represented the largest source of atmospheric VOCs for all seasons, ranging from 22.41% to 38.95%, and the percentage of fuel evaporation was enhanced in summer, up to 25.94%. The contributions of biomass burning in autumn (21.11%) and winter (18.01%) were larger than those in spring (11.23%) and summer (16.94%), probably reflecting crop straw burning by communities in the later seasons. Vehicle exhaust was the dominant source of VOCs across all functional zones (30.04%-44.39%), while fuel evaporation was the major contributor (36.20%) in the residential site.


Volatile organic compounds Source apportionment Ozone formation potential Positive matrix factorization Coastal city

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