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Size distribution characteristics of carbonaceous aerosol in Xishuangbanna, southwest China: a sign for biomass burning in Asia

Guo, Yuhong
Environmental monitoring and assessment 2016 v.188 no.3 pp. 148
aerosols, autumn, biomass, burning, carbon, combustion, emissions, forests, fossil fuels, seasonal variation, spring, summer, winter, China, South East Asia
In 2012, size-segregated aerosol samples were collected in Xishuangbanna, a forest station in southwest China. The concentrations of organic and elemental carbon (OC and EC for short) were quantified with thermal/optical carbon analyzer in the filter samples. OC and EC exhibited similar seasonal patterns, with the highest concentrations in spring, possibly due to the influence of biomass burning in south and southeast Asia. The mass size distributions of OC and EC were bimodal in all the sampling seasons, each with a dominant peak in the fine mode of 0.4–0.7 μm and a coarse peak in the size range of 2.1–4.7 μm. In fine mode, OC and EC showed smaller geometric mean diameters (GMDs) during winter. OC and EC were prone to be more concentrated in fine particles in spring and winter than in summer and autumn. Furthermore, EC was more abundant in fine particles than OC. Good correlations (R ² = 0.75–0.82) between OC and EC indicated that they had common dominant sources of combustion such as biomass burning and fossil fuel combustion emissions. The daily average OC/EC ratios ranged from 2.1 to 9.1, more elevated OC/EC ratios being found in the winter.