Atmos. Chem. Phys. Discuss., 8, 17439-17466, 2008
www.atmos-chem-phys-discuss.net/8/17439/2008/
doi:10.5194/acpd-8-17439-2008
© Author(s) 2008. This work is distributed
under the Creative Commons Attribution 3.0 License.
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This discussion paper has been under review for the journal Atmospheric Chemistry and Physics (ACP). Please refer to the corresponding final paper in ACP.
Oligomers, organosulfates, and nitroxy organosulfates in rainwater identified by ultra-high resolution electrospray ionization FT-ICR mass spectrometry
K. E. Altieri1, B. J. Turpin2, and S. P. Seitzinger1,3
1Institute of Marine and Coastal Sciences, Rutgers University, New Brunswick, NJ, USA
2Department of Environmental Sciences, Rutgers University, New Brunswick, NJ, USA
3Rutgers/NOAA CMER Program, Rutgers University, New Brunswick, NJ, USA

Abstract. Wet deposition is an important removal mechanism for atmospheric organic matter, and a potentially important input for receiving ecosystems, yet less than 50% of rainwater organic matter is considered chemically characterized. Precipitation samples collected in New Jersey, USA, were analyzed by negative ion ultra-high resolution electrospray ionization Fourier transform ion cyclotron resonance mass spectrometry (FT-ICR MS). Elemental compositions of 552 unique molecular species were determined in the mass range 50–500 Da in the rainwater. Three main groups of organic compounds were identified: compounds containing carbon, hydrogen, and oxygen (CHO) only, sulfur (S) containing CHOS compounds, and S- and nitrogen containing CHONS compounds. Organic acids commonly identified in precipitation were detected, as well as linear alkylbenzene sulfonates, which are persistent pollutants commonly measured in river water, seawater, and sediments, but to our knowledge, not previously documented in atmospheric samples. Within the three main groups of compounds detected in the rainwater, oligomers, organosulfates, and nitroxy-organosulfates were identified. The majority of the compounds identified are products of atmospheric reactions and are known contributors to secondary organic aerosol (SOA) formed from gas phase, aerosol phase, and in-cloud reactions in the atmosphere. It is suggested that the large uncharacterized component of SOA is the main contributor to the large uncharacterized component of rainwater organic matter.

Citation: Altieri, K. E., Turpin, B. J., and Seitzinger, S. P.: Oligomers, organosulfates, and nitroxy organosulfates in rainwater identified by ultra-high resolution electrospray ionization FT-ICR mass spectrometry, Atmos. Chem. Phys. Discuss., 8, 17439-17466, doi:10.5194/acpd-8-17439-2008, 2008.
 
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