Formation mechanism and control strategy for particulate nitrate in China

Yuanhang Zhang , Haichao Wang , Keding Lu , Zhaofeng Tan , Xiaorui Chen , Yuhan Liu


Received March 20, 2022,Revised , Accepted September 14, 2022, Available online September 26, 2022

Volume 123,2023,Pages 476-486

Over the past decade, fine particulate matter (PM) pollution in China has been abated significantly, benefiting from strict emission control measures, but particulate nitrate continues to rise. Here, we review the progress in particulate nitrate (pNO3) pollution characterization, nitrate formation mechanisms, and the proposed control strategies in China. The spatial and temporal distributions of pNO3 are summarized. The current status of knowledge on the chemical mechanism is updated, and the significance of its formation pathways is assessed by various approaches such as field observation and modelling of nitrate production rate, as well as isotopic analysis. The factors impacting pNO3 formation and the corresponding pollution regulation strategies are discussed, in which the importance of atmospheric oxidation capacity and ammonia are addressed. Finally, the challenges and open questions in pNO3 pollution control in China are outlined.

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