Characteristics of submicron particulate matter at the Urban roadside in downtown Hong Kong-Overview of 4 months of continuous high-Resolution aerosol mass spectrometer measurements

Berto P. Lee, Yong Jie Li, Jian Zhen Yu, Peter K.K. Louie, Chak K. Chan

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

68 Scopus citations

Abstract

Hong Kong, one of the world’s most densely populated cities and an international financial center, has been suffering from traffic-related air pollution. This study presents the first real-time high-resolution aerosol mass spectrometrymeasurements of submicron nonrefractory particulate matter (NR-PM1) at the urban roadside in Hong Kong from March to July 2013 with the aim to identify major sources, to assess local and nonlocal emissions, and to characterize trends at different time scales. Organicswere dominant, with fresh primary organic aerosol representing two thirds of the total measured organics. Cooking contributions in organic aerosol were assessed directly for the first time in Hong Kong and exceeded those related to vehicles although traffic was still the major PM1 source when elemental carbon was included. These findings were supported by additional measurements including traffic data, elemental/organic carbon, and VOC data. Springtime concentrations were about double of those in summer, due to a strong seasonal transition which affected meteorological conditions and street-level circulation. Local formation of secondary species was not clearly discernible in either season. The elemental composition of organic aerosol remained stable with similar elemental ratios across the covered seasons: OM/OC: 1.49 ± 0.13, O/C: 0.25 ± 0.10, H/C: 1.68 ± 0.08 for spring and OM/OC: 1.43 ± 0.14, O/C: 0.21 ± 0.11, H/C: 1.69 ± 0.08 for summer. Diurnal changes in H/C and O/C as a result of mixing of primary organic aerosol and secondary organic aerosol were evident in the van Krevelen plot.
Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)7040-7058
Number of pages19
JournalJournal of Geophysical Research
Volume120
Issue number14
DOIs
StatePublished - Jan 1 2015
Externally publishedYes

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