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© Author(s) 2019. This work is distributed under
the Creative Commons Attribution 4.0 License.
© Author(s) 2019. This work is distributed under
the Creative Commons Attribution 4.0 License.

Submitted as: research article 02 Sep 2019

Submitted as: research article | 02 Sep 2019

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

Morphology and size of the particles emitted from a GDI-engine vehicle and their ageing in an environmental chamber

Jiaoping Xing1,2, Longyi Shao1, Wenbin Zhang3, Jianfei Peng4, Wenhua Wang1, Shijin Shuai3, Min Hu4, and Daizhou Zhang5 Jiaoping Xing et al.
  • 1State Key Laboratory of Coal Resources and Safe Mining, School of Geoscience and Survey Engineering, China University of Mining and Technology (Beijing), Beijing 100083, China
  • 22011 Collaborative Innovation Center of Jiangxi Typical Trees Cultivation and Utilization, School of Forestry, Jiangxi Agricultural University, Nanchang, 330045, China
  • 3State Key Laboratory of Automotive Safety and Energy, Department of Automotive Engineering, Tsinghua University, Beijing 100084, China
  • 4State Key Joint Laboratory of Environmental Simulation and Pollution Control, College of Environmental Sciences and Engineering, Peking University, Beijing 100871, China
  • 5Faculty of Environmental and Symbiotic Sciences, Prefectural University of Kumamoto, Kumamoto 862-8502, Japan

Abstract. Air pollution is particularly severe in developing megacities, such as Beijing, where pollutants from vehicles equipped with modern gasoline direct injection (GDI) engines must be paid enough attention. This study presents the characteristics of individual particles emitted by a GDI gasoline vehicle and their ageing in a smog chamber under the Beijing urban environment, as part of the Atmospheric Pollution & Human Health (APHH) research programme. Using electron microscopy, we identified the particles emitted from a commercial GDI-engine vehicle running under various conditions, namely cold start, hot start, hot stabilized running, idle, and acceleration states. Our results show that most of the particles were organic, soot and Ca-rich ones, with small quantities of S-rich and metal-containing particles. In terms of grain size, the particles exhibited a bimodal distribution in number vs size, with one mode at 800–900 nm, and the other at 140–240 nm. The amounts of organic particles emitted under hot start and hot stabilized states were higher than those emitted under other conditions. The amount of soot particles was higher under cold start and acceleration states. Under the idle state, the proportion of Ca-rich particles was highest, although their absolute number was low. In addition to quantifying the types of particles emitted by the engine, we studied the ageing of the particles during 3.5 hours of photochemical oxidation in an environmental chamber under the Beijing urban environment. Ageing transformed soot particles into core-shell structures, coated by secondary organic species, while the content of sulfur in Ca-rich and organic particles increased. Overall, the majority of particles from GDI-engine vehicles are organic and soot particles with submicron or nanometric size. The particles are highly reactive; they react in the atmosphere and change their morphology and composition within hours via catalyzed acidification that involves gaseous pollutants under high pollution levels in Beijing.

Jiaoping Xing et al.
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Jiaoping Xing et al.
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Short summary
Our results highlight the contribution of GDI vehicles to aerosols, both primary and secondary aerosols. The major particles from GDI vehicles are organic and soot particles, and they are active to participate in chemical conversions in the atmosphere leading to morphology and composition changes in hours. The rapid aging could be attributable to acid-catalyzed mechanism and high concentrations of gaseous pollutants. These results would be beneficial to the control of PM2.5 pollutions.
Our results highlight the contribution of GDI vehicles to aerosols, both primary and secondary...