Experiments were conducted to examine the effects of dilution on fine particle mass emissions from a diesel engine and wood stove. Filter measurements were made simultaneously using three dilution sampling systems operating at dilution ratios ranging from 20:1 to 510:1. Denuders and backup filters were used to quantify organic sampling artifacts. For the diesel engine operating at low load and wood combustion, large decreases in fine particle mass emissions were observed with increases in dilution. For example, the PM2.5 mass emission rate from a diesel engine operating at low load decreased by 50% when the dilution ratio was increased from 20:1 to 350:1. Measurements of organic and elemental carbon indicate that the changes in fine particle mass with dilution are caused by changes in partitioning of semivolatile organic compounds. At low levels of dilution semivolatile species largely occur in the particle phase, but increasing dilution reduces the concentration of semivolatile species, shifting this material to the gas phase in order to maintain phase equilibrium. Emissions of elemental carbon do not vary with dilution. Organic sampling artifacts are shown to vary with dilution because of the combination of changes in partitioning coupled with adsorption of gas-phase organics by quartz filters. The fine particle mass emissions from the diesel engine operating at medium load did not vary with dilution because of the lower emissions of semivolatile material and higher emissions of elemental carbon. To measure partitioning of semivolatile materials under atmospheric conditions, partitioning theory indicates that dilution samplers need to be operated such that the diluted exhaust achieves atmospheric levels of dilution. Too little dilution can potentially overestimate the fine particle mass emissions, and too much dilution (with clean air) can underestimate them.
All Science Journal Classification (ASJC) codes
- Environmental Chemistry