Effect of aqueous-phase processing on aerosol chemistry and size distributions in Fresno, California, during wintertime

Xinlei Ge, Qi Zhang, Yele Sun, Christopher R. Ruehl, Ari Setyan

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle

72 Citations (Scopus)

Abstract

Submicrometre aerosols (PM1) were characterised in situ with a high resolution time-of-flight aerosol mass spectrometer and a scanning mobility particle sizer in Fresno, CA, from 9 to 23 January 2010. Three dense fog events occurred during the first week of the campaign whereas the last week was influenced by frequent rain events. We thus studied the effects of aqueous-phase processing on aerosol properties by examining the temporal variations of submicrometre aerosol composition and size distributions. Rains removed secondary species effectively, leading to low loadings of PM1 dominated by primary organic species. Fog episodes, however, increased the concentrations of secondary aerosol species (sulfate, nitrate, ammonium and oxygenated organic aerosol). The size distributions of these secondary species, which always showed a droplet mode peaking at ∼500nm in the vacuum aerodynamic diameter, increased in mode size during fog episodes as well. In addition, the oxygen-to-carbon ratio of oxygenated organic species increased in foggy days, indicating that fog processing likely enhances the production of secondary organic aerosol as well as its oxidation degree. Overall, our observations show that aqueous-phase processes significantly affect submicrometre aerosol chemistry and microphysics in the Central Valley of California during winter, responsible for the production of secondary inorganic and organic aerosol species and the formation of droplet mode particles, thus altering the climatic and health effects of ambient aerosols in this region.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)221-235
Number of pages15
JournalEnvironmental Chemistry
Volume9
Issue number3
DOIs
Publication statusPublished - Jul 10 2012

Fingerprint

Aerosols
aerosol
fog
Processing
Fog
droplet
Rain
aerosol composition
aerosol property
effect
ammonium nitrate
aerodynamics
Mass spectrometers
temporal variation
spectrometer
particle size
Sulfates
sulfate
Aerodynamics
valley

All Science Journal Classification (ASJC) codes

  • Chemistry (miscellaneous)
  • Environmental Chemistry
  • Geochemistry and Petrology

Cite this

Ge, Xinlei ; Zhang, Qi ; Sun, Yele ; Ruehl, Christopher R. ; Setyan, Ari. / Effect of aqueous-phase processing on aerosol chemistry and size distributions in Fresno, California, during wintertime. In: Environmental Chemistry. 2012 ; Vol. 9, No. 3. pp. 221-235.
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Effect of aqueous-phase processing on aerosol chemistry and size distributions in Fresno, California, during wintertime. / Ge, Xinlei; Zhang, Qi; Sun, Yele; Ruehl, Christopher R.; Setyan, Ari.

In: Environmental Chemistry, Vol. 9, No. 3, 10.07.2012, p. 221-235.

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle

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