Aerosol characterization in a city in central China plain and implications for emission control

Yele Sun , Zhijie Li , Lu Lei , Yanpei Li , Chun Chen , Qingqing Wang , Wei Zhou , Jiaxing Sun , Conghui Xie


Received August 02, 2020,Revised , Accepted November 09, 2020, Available online December 22, 2020

Volume 33,2021,Pages 242-252

Extensive studies on aerosol chemistry have been carried out in megacities in China, however, aerosol characterization in Central China Plain (CCP) is limited. Here we conducted real-time measurements of fine particle composition with a time-of-flight aerosol chemical speciation monitor in Kaifeng, Henan province in October 2019. Our results showed that nitrate and organics constituted the major fraction of non-refractory PM2.5 for the entire study, on average accounting for 34% and 33%, respectively. However, aerosol composition was substantially different among four periods due to different meteorological conditions and chemical processing. For instance, nitrate presented the lowest contribution during the first period due to evaporative loss associated with high temperature (T), and then rapidly increased during polluted periods as a function of relative humidity (RH). Positive matrix factorization analysis showed the dominance of secondary organic aerosol (SOA) in OA, and also the changes in OA composition under different T and RH levels. In addition, this study is unique with two periods of local emission controls. Back trajectory and coefficient of divergence analysis showed that air pollution in CCP was overall homogeneously distributed. As a result, the effectiveness of local emission controls in this region was strongly affected by meteorological conditions and regional transport. We found that one of the periods with emission control even showed the highest concentrations for the entire study. Our results point towards the limited effect of local emission controls in mitigating air pollution in CCP, and highlight the importance of joint emission controls under unfavorable meteorological conditions.

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