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Discussion papers
https://doi.org/10.5194/acp-2019-436
© Author(s) 2019. This work is distributed under
the Creative Commons Attribution 4.0 License.
https://doi.org/10.5194/acp-2019-436
© Author(s) 2019. This work is distributed under
the Creative Commons Attribution 4.0 License.

Submitted as: research article 30 Aug 2019

Submitted as: research article | 30 Aug 2019

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

Long-Range Transport Mechanisms in East and Southeast Asia and Impacts on Size-Resolved Aerosol Composition: Contrasting High and Low Aerosol Loading Events

Rachel A. Braun1, Mojtaba Azadi Aghdam1, Paola Angela Bañaga2,3, Grace Betito3, Maria Obiminda Cambaliza2,3, Melliza Templonuevo Cruz2,4, Genevieve Rose Lorenzo2, Alexander B. MacDonald1, James Bernard Simpas2,3, Connor Stahl1, and Armin Sorooshian1,5 Rachel A. Braun et al.
  • 1Department of Chemical and Environmental Engineering, University of Arizona, Tucson, AZ, USA
  • 2Manila Observatory, Loyola Heights, Quezon City 1108, Philippines
  • 3Department of Physics, School of Science and Engineering, Ateneo de Manila University, Loyola Heights, Quezon City 1108, Philippines
  • 4Institute of Environmental Science and Meteorology, University of the Philippines, Diliman, Quezon City 1101, Philippines
  • 5Department of Hydrology and Atmospheric Sciences, University of Arizona, Tucson, AZ, USA

Abstract. This study analyzes mechanisms of long-range transport of aerosol and aerosol chemical characteristics in and around East and Southeast Asia. Ground-based size-resolved aerosol measurements collected at the Manila Observatory in Metro Manila, Philippines from July–October 2018 were used to identify and contrast high and low aerosol loading events. Multiple data sources, including models, remote-sensing, and in situ measurements, are used to analyze the impacts of long-range aerosol transport on Metro Manila and the conditions at the local and synoptic scales facilitating this transport. Evidence of long-range transport of biomass burning aerosol from the Maritime Continent was identified through model results and the presence of biomass burning tracers (e.g. K, Rb) in the ground-based measurements. The impacts of emissions transported from continental East Asia are also identified; for one of the events analyzed, this transport was facilitated by the nearby passage of a typhoon. Changes in the aerosol size distributions, water-soluble chemical composition, and contributions of various organic aerosol species to the total water-soluble organic aerosol were examined for the different cases. The events impacted by biomass burning transport had the overall highest concentration of water-soluble organic acids, while the events impacted by long-range transport from continental East Asia, showed high percent contributions from shorter chain dicarboxylic acids (i.e. oxalate) that are often representative of photochemical and aqueous processing in the atmosphere. The low aerosol loading event was subject to a larger precipitation accumulation than the high aerosol events, indicative of wet scavenging as an aerosol sink in the study region. This low aerosol event was characterized by a larger relative contribution from supermicrometer aerosols and had a higher percent contribution from longer-chain dicarboxylic acids (i.e. maleate) to the water-soluble organic aerosol fraction. Results of this study have implications for better understanding of the transport and chemical characteristics of aerosol in a highly-populated region that has thus far been difficult to measure through remote-sensing methods. Furthermore, findings associated with the effects of air mass mixing on aerosol physiochemical properties are applicable to other global regions impacted by both natural and anthropogenic sources.

Rachel A. Braun et al.
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