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Discussion papers | Copyright
https://doi.org/10.5194/acp-2018-490
© Author(s) 2018. This work is distributed under
the Creative Commons Attribution 4.0 License.

Research article 09 Aug 2018

Research article | 09 Aug 2018

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

Understanding the catalytic role of oxalic acid in the SO3 hydration to form H2SO4 in the atmosphere

Guochun Lv1, Xiaomin Sun1, Chenxi Zhang2, and Mei Li3,4 Guochun Lv et al.
  • 1Environment Research Institute, Shandong University, Jinan 250100, China
  • 2College of Biological and Environmental Engineering, Binzhou University, Binzhou 256600, China
  • 3Institute of Mass Spectrometer and Atmospheric Environment, Jinan University, Guangzhou 510632, China
  • 4Guangdong Provincial Engineering Research Center for on-line source apportionment system of air pollution, Guangzhou 510632, China

Abstract. The hydration of SO3 plays an important role in atmospheric sulfuric acid formation. Some atmospheric species can involve in and facilitate the reaction. In this work, using quantum chemical calculations, we show that oxalic acid, the most common dicarboxylic acid in the atmosphere, can effectively catalyze the hydration of SO3. The energy barrier of SO3 hydration reaction catalyzed by oxalic acid (cTt, tTt, tCt and cCt conformers) is about or below 1kcalmol−1, which is lower than the energy barrier of 5.73kcalmol−1 for water-catalyzed SO3 hydration. By comparing the rate of SO3 hydration reaction catalyzed by oxalic acid and water, it can be found that the oxalic acid-catalyzed SO3 hydration can compete with water-catalyzed SO3 hydration in the upper troposphere. This leads us to conclude that the involvement of oxalic acid in SO3 hydration to form H2SO4 is significant at some conditions in the atmosphere.

Guochun Lv et al.
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The hydration of SO3 to produce H2SO4 is the important process in the atmospheric formation of H2SO4. Using quantum chemical calculations, we investigate the catalytic role of oxalic acid in the SO3 hydration. The results show that oxalic acid is effective in facilitating the hydration of SO3 to form H2SO4. The kinetics analysis result indicates that the oxalic acid-catalyzed SO3 hydration can play an important role in the upper troposphere.
The hydration of SO3 to produce H2SO4 is the important process in the atmospheric formation of...
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