Characteristics of organic matter in PM2.5 in Shanghai

Jialiang Feng, Chak K. Chan, Ming Fang, Min Hu, Lingyan He, Xiaoyan Tang

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

149 Scopus citations


Solvent extractable organic compounds (SEOC), organic carbon, elemental carbon and water soluble organic carbon (WSOC) in PM2.5 samples collected in Shanghai, China in 2002 and 2003 were measured to determine the composition and sources of the organic matter in atmospheric aerosols. Distinct seasonal variations were detected with higher concentrations of organic matter in winter. The concentration of total carbon of about 20 μg m-3 in winter was about three times the summer value. About 30% of the total carbon was water soluble. Unresolved complex mixture (UCM) and fatty acids were the most abundant components quantified in SEOC, similar to other Chinese cities previously studied. High ratio of UCM to n-alkanes (U:R) and the composition of triterpanes indicated that engine exhaust was a major source of the airborne organic matter. Emissions from coal burning had more impact in the rural areas, according to the U:R value and PAHs composition. Chemical mass balance (CMB) modeling shows that about half of the organic carbon was from engine exhaust and about 15% was from coal burning. No clear spatial variation in the concentration of the organic matter was found between urban and rural areas. Our results showed that due to the rapid urbanization and relocation of industrial plants from urban areas to rural areas in the past 20 years, air pollution in rural areas is becoming a serious problem in Shanghai and the Yangtze River delta. © 2006 Elsevier Ltd. All rights reserved.
Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)1393-1400
Number of pages8
Issue number8
StatePublished - Jan 1 2006
Externally publishedYes

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Environmental Chemistry
  • Chemistry(all)


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