Potential factors and mechanism of particulate matters explosive increase induced by free radicals oxidation

Guoying Wang , Shiming Jia , Xiuli Niu , Haoqi Tian , Yanrong Liu , Zhong Xie , Chao Liu , Yucan Dong , Ying Su , Jianglei Yu , Gaofeng Shi , Xuefu Chen , Lan Li , Peng Zhang


Received August 06, 2018,Revised , Accepted January 11, 2019, Available online January 23, 2019

Volume 31,2019,Pages 205-213

Atmospheric particulate pollution in China has attracted much public attention. Occasionally, the particle number concentration increases sharply in a short time period, which is defined as a “particulate matter explosive increase”. Heavy particulate matter pollution not only reduces visibility but also has an adverse effect on human health. Hence, there is an urgent need to discover the causes of particulate matter explosive increase. During this campaign, the particle number concentration and free radicals were measured at a tall building on the campus of Lanzhou University of Technology. Additionally, we examined a series of chemicals to reproduce the observed particulate matter explosive increase in a smog chamber to determine its potential factors. Then, we analyzed the mechanism of particulate matter explosive increase in the presence of free radicals. We found that, among the potential inorganic and organic sources analyzed, a mixture of organic and SO2 in the research region had a major effect on particulate matter explosive increase. Moreover, free radical oxidation has a large effect, especially in the formation of organic particulates.

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