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Atmospheric Chemistry and Physics An interactive open-access journal of the European Geosciences Union
© Author(s) 2017. This work is distributed
under the Creative Commons Attribution 3.0 License.
Research article
12 Jan 2017
Review status
A revision of this discussion paper was accepted for the journal Atmospheric Chemistry and Physics (ACP) and is expected to appear here in due course.
Enhanced hydrophobicity and volatility of submicron aerosols under severe emission control conditions in Beijing
Yuying Wang1, Fang Zhang1, Zhanqing Li1, Haobo Tan2, Hanbing Xu3, Jingye Ren1, Jian Zhao4, Wei Du4, and Yele Sun4 1College of Global Change and Earth System Science, Beijing Normal University, Beijing 100875, China
2Key Laboratory of Regional Numerical Weather Prediction, Institute of Tropical and Marine Meteorology, China Meteorological Administration, Guangzhou 510080, China
3Shared Experimental Education Center, Sun Yat-sen University, Guangzhou 510275, China
4State Key Laboratory of Atmospheric Boundary Layer Physics and Atmospheric Chemistry, Institute of Atmospheric Physics, Chinese Academy of Sciences, Beijing 100029, China
Abstract. A series of strict emission control measures were implemented in Beijing and the surrounding seven provinces to ensure good air quality during the 2015 China Victory Day parade, rendering a unique opportunity to investigate anthropogenic impact of aerosol properties. Submicron aerosol hygroscopicity and volatility were measured during and after the control period using a hygroscopic and volatile tandem differential mobility analyzer (H/V-TDMA) system. Three periods, namely, the control clean period (Clean1), the non-control clean period (Clean2), and the non-control pollution period (Pollution), were selected to study the effect of the emission control measures on aerosol hygroscopicity and volatility. Aerosol particles became more hydrophobic and volatile due to the emission control measures. The hygroscopicity parameter (κ) of 40–200 nm particles decreased by 32.0 %–8.5 % during the Clean1 period relative to the Clean2 period, while the volatile shrink factor (SF) of 40–300 nm particles decreased by 7.5 %–10.5 %. The emission controls also changed the diurnal variation patterns of both the probability density function of κ (κ-PDF) and the probability density function of SF (SF-PDF). During Clean1 the κ-PDF showed one nearly-hydrophobic (NH) mode for particles in the nucleation mode, which was likely due to the dramatic reduction in industrial emissions of inorganic trace gases. Compared to the Pollution period, particles observed during the Clean1 and Clean2 periods exhibited a more significant non-volatile (NV) mode throughout the day, suggesting a more externally-mixed state particularly for the 150 nm particles. Aerosol hygroscopicities increased as particle sizes increased, with the greatest increases seen during the Pollution period. Accordingly, the aerosol volatility became weaker (i.e., SF increased) as particle sizes increased during the Clean1 and Clean2 periods, but no apparent trend was observed during the Pollution period. Based on a correlation analysis of the number fractions of NH and NV particles, we found that a higher number fraction of hydrophobic and volatile particles during the emission control period.

Citation: Wang, Y., Zhang, F., Li, Z., Tan, H., Xu, H., Ren, J., Zhao, J., Du, W., and Sun, Y.: Enhanced hydrophobicity and volatility of submicron aerosols under severe emission control conditions in Beijing, Atmos. Chem. Phys. Discuss., doi:10.5194/acp-2016-1103, in review, 2017.
Yuying Wang et al.
Yuying Wang et al.


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