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Atmospheric Chemistry and Physics An interactive open-access journal of the European Geosciences Union
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Discussion papers
https://doi.org/10.5194/acp-2018-1083
© Author(s) 2018. This work is distributed under
the Creative Commons Attribution 4.0 License.
https://doi.org/10.5194/acp-2018-1083
© Author(s) 2018. This work is distributed under
the Creative Commons Attribution 4.0 License.

Research article 18 Oct 2018

Research article | 18 Oct 2018

Review status
This discussion paper is a preprint. It is a manuscript under review for the journal Atmospheric Chemistry and Physics (ACP).

Characterization of Ozone Production in San Antonio, Texas Using Observations of Total Peroxy Radicals

Daniel C. Anderson1, Jessica Pavelec1, Conner Daube2, Scott C. Herndon2, W. Berk Knighton3, Brian M. Lerner2, J. Robert Roscioli2, Tara I. Yacovitch2, and Ezra C. Wood1 Daniel C. Anderson et al.
  • 1Department of Chemistry, Drexel University, Philadelphia, PA, USA
  • 2Aerodyne Research Inc., Billerica, MA, USA
  • 3Department of Chemistry and Biochemistry, Montana State University, Bozeman, MT, USA

Abstract. Observations of total peroxy radicals (XO2 = RO2 + HO2) made by the Ethane CHemical AMPlifier (ECHAMP) and concomitant observations of additional trace gases made onboard the Aerodyne Mobile Laboratory (AML) during May 2017 were used to characterize ozone production at three sites in the San Antonio, Texas region. Median daytime [O3] was 48ppbv at the site downwind of central San Antonio. Higher concentrations of NO and XO2 at the downwind site also led to median daytime ozone production rates (P(O3)) of 4.2ppbv hr−1, a factor of two higher than at the two upwind sites. The 95th percentile of P(O3) at the upwind site was 15.1ppbvhr−1, significantly lower than values observed in Houston. In situ observations, as well as satellite retrievals of HCHO and NO3, suggest that the region is NOx limited for times after approximately 09:00 local time, before which ozone production is VOC-limited. Biogenic volatile organic compounds (VOC) comprised 55% of total OH reactivity at the downwind site, with alkanes and non-biogenic alkenes responsible for less than 10% of total OH reactivity in the afternoon, when ozone production was highest. To control ozone formation rates at the three study sites effectively, policy efforts should be directed at reducing NOx emissions. Observations in the urban center of San Antonio are needed to determine whether this policy is true for the entire region.

Daniel C. Anderson et al.
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Short summary
San Antonio is one of the largest cities in the United States and is in non-attainment of the 8-hour ozone standard. Using the Aerodyne Mobile Laboratory, we made observations of ozone and its precursors at three sites in the San Antonio region to determine the main drivers of its production. We found that compounds produced by plants were the dominant organic compound for ozone production and that to limit ozone production at the study site, emissions of nitrogen oxides should be reduced.
San Antonio is one of the largest cities in the United States and is in non-attainment of the...
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