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Semivolatile Organic Compounds (SOCs) in Fine Particulate Matter (PM2.5) during Clear, Fog, and Haze Episodes in Winter in Beijing, China

Wang, Ting, Tian, Mi, Ding, Nan, Yan, Xiao, Chen, She-Jun, Mo, Yang-Zhi, Yang, Wei-Qiang, Bi, Xin-Hui, Wang, Xin-Ming, Mai, Bi-Xian
Environmental science & technology 2018 v.52 no.9 pp. 5199-5207
air, cities, combustion, emissions, flame retardants, heat, models, octanol, organophosphorus compounds, particulates, partition coefficients, pollutants, polycyclic aromatic hydrocarbons, volatile organic compounds, weather, winter, China
Few efforts have been made to elucidate the influence of weather conditions on the fate of semivolatile organic compounds (SOCs). Here, daily fine particulate matter (PM₂.₅) during clear, haze, and fog episodes collected in the winter in Beijing, China was analyzed for polycyclic aromatic hydrocarbons (PAHs), brominated flame retardants (BFRs), and organophosphate flame retardants (OPFRs). The total concentrations of PAHs, OPFRs, and BFRs had medians of 45.1 ng/m³ and 1347 and 46.7 pg/m³, respectively. The temporal pattern for PAH concentrations was largely dependent on coal combustion for residential heating. OPFR compositions that change during colder period were related to enhanced indoor emissions due to heating. The mean concentrations of SOCs during haze and fog days were 2–10 times higher than those during clear days. We found that BFRs with lower octanol and air partition coefficients tended to increase during haze and fog episodes, be removed from PM₂.₅ during clear episodes, or both. For PAHs and OPFRs, pollutants that are more recalcitrant to degradation were prone to accumulate during haze and fog days. The potential source contribution function (PSCF) model indicated that southern and eastern cities were major source regions of SOCs at this site.