Chemistry and Physics Faculty Proceedings, Presentations, Speeches, Lectures

Organic Compounds in Atmospheric Aerosols – Identity, Origin, Evolution

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CIMAS Visiting Scientist Seminar; RSMAS University of Miami

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Laboratory and field evidence suggests that organic compounds comprise a substantial mass fraction of atmospheric aerosols. Yet commonly, less than 20% (in mass fraction) of the total organic aerosol can be speciated into individual compounds, hindering our abilities to full understand aerosols? climatic and health effects. I will be talking about some recent findings with regard to organic aerosols from laboratory experiments, field measurements and noval analytical speciation. In simulation chambers, it is found that high-molecular-weight species may comprise a substantial fraction of organic aerosols, and some of these species are oligomeric in nature. Higher particle acidity apparently leads to more oligomer formation and higher aerosol yield. By using novel analytical instrumentation, new classes of compounds have been identified in field samples, including organosulfates, organonitrates, dehydrated sugars, and N-containing organic salts. These will be discussed using the results from SAFARI-2000, ACE-Asia, a campaign in Southeastern US and latest measurements in downtown Shanghai, China. A fine balance needs to be reached between continuing to uncover new classes of organic compounds and identifying representative species and formation pathways in atmospheric aerosols.

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