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Open Access High-Volume Diffusion Denuder Sampler for the Routine Monitoring of Fine Particulate Matter: II. Field Evaluation of the PC-BOSS

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The high-volume Brigham Young University organic sampling system with a particle concentrator (PC-BOSS) has been field evaluated for the determination of airborne fine particulate matter including semivolatile chemical species during 3 intensive sampling programs in 1997: Tennessee Valley Authority (TVA), Lawrence County, TN; Riverside, CA; and Provo, UT. The PC-BOSS precision was tested using 2 collocated PC-BOSS samplers. In addition, the PC-BOSS results were compared with results from a prototype PM2.5 U.S. EPA federal reference method (FRM sampler), a filter pack sampler (quartz and charcoal sorbent filters), the BIG BOSS, an annular denuder sampler, and the ChemSpec sampler for the determination of major fine particulate species. Fine particulate mass, sulfate, nitrate, and organic carbonaceous material (OC) determined by 2 PC-BOSS samplers agreed within ±10%. Possibly due to absorption of SO2 by a quartz filter, the sulfate concentrations determined by the filter pack sampler and the BIG BOSS were higher (by 10 ± 3%) than concentrations obtained with the other samplers. No absorption of SO2(g) by the quartz filters of the PC-BOSS occurred due to the high efficiency (>99%) of its denuder. The PC-BOSS, annular denuder, and ChemSpec samplers agreed with each other (to within ±0.5 g/m3, ±17%, with no bias) for the determination of fine particulate nitrate concentrations, including volatilization losses. The prototype PM2.5 FRM sampler collected only particle-retained nonvolatile mass. The mass concentrations determined by the PM2.5 FRM agreed with those collected by the post-denuder Teflon filters of the PC-BOSS (to within ±1.1 g/m3, ±10%, with no bias). The overall loss of material from particles and the resultant underestimation of the particulate mass concentrations by the PM2.5 FRM depended on the fine particle composition and the ambient temperature.

Document Type: Research Article


Affiliations: 1: Department of Chemistry and Biochemistry, Brigham Young University, Provo, Utah 2: Department of Chemistry, California Polytechnic State University, San Luis Obispo, California 3: Atmospheric Sciences, Tennessee Valley Authority, Muscle Shoals, Alabama

Publication date: 2002-04-01

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