Carnegie Mellon University
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Determination of the age distribution of primary and secondary aerosol species using a chemical transport model

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journal contribution
posted on 2009-07-01, 00:00 authored by Kristina M. Wagstrom, Spyros N. Pandis

[1] A computationally efficient scheme to allow tracking of aerosol species age as a function of space and time within a three-dimensional chemical transport model (CTM) has been developed. The aerosol age distribution is calculated by utilizing the Particulate Matter Source Apportionment Technology (PSAT) algorithm which allows the calculation of different source contributions to both primary and secondary particulate matter concentrations in the modeling domain. As an example, the aerosol age in the eastern United States, including both primary and secondary species, is examined using the regional CTM PMCAMx. The average calculated ages are on the order of a few days for particulate matter near the ground but are highly variable in space and time. Primary aerosol species had average ages of approximately 24 h over this polluted continental region while the average ages for secondary species were 48–72 h near the surface. As expected, the average age of all aerosol components increases vertically in the atmosphere. Age increases rapidly away from the sources of aerosol and its precursors, and for nonvolatile species it increases with particle size.


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Copyright 2009 by the American Geophysical Union



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