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Journal of Radioanalytical and Nuclear Chemistry
Authors: Caijin Xiao, Guiying Zhang, Donghui Huang, Bangfa Ni, Cunxiong Liu, Yali Qin, Hongchao Sun, Pingsheng Wang, and Weizhi Tian

Abstract  

A total of 178 aerosol samples in two size fractions, PM10-2.5 (coarse) and PM2.5 (fine), were collected on nucleopore films using a Gent stacked filter unit sampler at the Graduate School of China Nuclear Industrial Group during May 2007 to November of 2009. Black carbon was determined by a reflectometer. A total of 16 elements, Mg, Al, S, Si, P, Cl, Ca, K, Ti, Mn, Fe, Ni, Cu, Zn, As and Pb, were determined by Particle Induced X-ray Emission. Mg, Al, Ca, K and Mn were also determined by Neutron Activation Analysis. Concentrations of all these elements were used to identify possible pollution sources and directions of the airborne particulate matter by means of softwares PMF and CPF. Some extraordinary events, such as sandstorms, firework and transboundary fire smoke were pinpointed by a combination of time series of multielement, relevant meteorological data and softwares Wind rose, Hysplit, and Google earth.

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Abstract  

The analysis of airborne particulate matter (APM) by k 0-NAA was assessed using: (1) BCR reference material (RM) simulated air-filters, (2) synthetic air-filters prepared by spiking blank filters with standard solutions, and (3) real APM filters. k 0-INAA is a suitable technique for the analysis of APM, delivering accurate and precise results. However, the quality assessment of APM analysis appears to be a difficult task.

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Journal of Radioanalytical and Nuclear Chemistry
Authors: M. Ebihara, Y. Chung, H. Dung, J. Moon, B. Ni, T. Otoshi, Y. Oura, F. Santos, F. Sasajima, Sutisna, B. Wee, W. Wimolwattanapun, and A. Wood

Abstract  

Air particulate matter (APM) samples (PM2.5 and PM10–2.5) were collected at 13 sampling points in 8 Asian countries and their chemical compositions were determined by using neutron activation analysis (NAA) with the k 0-standardization method in addition to conventional comparative method of NAA. Analytical data showed that mass concentration and elemental composition of the APM collected are variable in terms of time and space, and are related to the characteristics of the sampling sites concerned. NAA was proved to be highly effective for the regional characterization of APM in chemical composition.

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Abstract  

About 250 sets of polycarbonate (Nuclepore, Costar) membrane filters loaded with two urban air particulate matter (APM) obtained in Vienna and Prague were prepared by filtration of a watter suspension of the above APM materials. The homogeneity of both bulk APM materials and the loaded filters was tested by determining a number of elements by instrumental neutron activation analysis (INAA), proton induced X-ray emission (PIXE) and micro-X-ray fluorescence (-XRF). Relative standard deviations due to inhomogeneity (s inh) were below 3% for many elements in the bulk APM materials. In the loaded filters, the s inh values increased significantly. Nevertheless, for up to 20 elements important in air pollution studies the s inh values were below 15%, allowing target values with a reasonably low uncertainties (up to 20%) to be derived for the future use of the filters in proficiency testing of laboratories involved in air pollution monitoring.

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Journal of Radioanalytical and Nuclear Chemistry
Authors: M. Ebihara, Y. S. Chung, W. Chueinta, B.-F. Ni, T. Otoshi, Y. Oura, F. L. Santos, F. Sasajima, Sutisna, and A. K. B. H. Wood

Summary  

Seven Asian countries have been collaborating in collecting airborne particulate matter (APM) in their individual countries and analyzing them by neutron activation analysis as a common analytical tool. APM samples were collected into two fractions of fine and coarse grains (PM2 and PM2-10, respectively). Analytical data were compared from several viewpoints such as particulate sizes, locality of sampling sites (either urban or rural) and geographical location of participating countries. Chemical composition and their monthly variations as well as mass concentrations appear to be highly characteristic for individual sampling sites, suggesting that NAA data are suitable for evaluating the air quality in each site.

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Abstract  

A new set of reference air filters was prepared for proficiency testing of laboratories involved in air pollution studies organized by the International Atomic Energy Agency (IAEA). The set consists of one filter loaded with airborne particulate matter (APM) and one blank filter. Target values and their standard deviations were established using instrumental neutron activation analysis (INAA) and proton induced X-ray emission (PIXE) with proven accuracy. Rutherford backscattering (RBS) was used to help in deriving the necessary corrections in PIXE. Losses of individual elements from APM due to the wet deposition procedure were evaluated.

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Abstract  

A Gent stacked filter unit sampler was used to collect air particulate matter (APM) in separate coarse (PM2.5–10) and fine (PM2.5) size fractions, at a sub-urban site in Lisbon, Portugal. The sampling was done during the year 2001 and two daily samples were taken per week. The filters were analyzed for particulate mass by instrumental neutron activation analysis (INAA). The chemical analysis of APM levels and the study of the atmospheric dynamics by back-trajectories showed that most of the PM2.5 and PM2.5–10 peaks events were associated with air masses transport from the Saharan desert. High mineral load in ambient particulate matter levels were registered during the Saharan dust outbreaks. The accuracy of INAA to measure Fe, Sc and Sm was evaluated by NIST filter standards, revealing results with an agreement of ± 10%. This method constituted an important tool to identify these events.

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Abstract  

In order to study the effects of air pollution, about 1,300 samples of airborne particulate matter (APM) were collected at suburban and industrial sites, in Daejeon, Korea from 1998 to 2006. The concentrations of carcinogenic (As and Cr) and non-carcinogenic metals (Al, Mn, and Zn) were determined by using instrumental neutron activation analysis (INAA). These long-term metal concentration data were applied to a risk assessment of inhalation exposure using Monte Carlo analysis (MCA).

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Abstract  

Harbour activities such as loading, unloading and transport of materials may be an important source of Atmospheric Particulate Matter (APM). Depending on the materials, the type of operation and the meteorological conditions, these activities may have an impact on the levels of APM around harbour areas. The aim of this work was to characterize the emissions of dust providing from operations associated with phosphorite handling in harbours. Phosphorite is a non-detrital sedimentary rock which contains high amounts of phosphate bearing minerals and is used for the production of phosphorous based fertilizers. When handled in harbours frequently cause visual and environment impacts due to its physical and chemical characteristics. The techniques Instrumental Neutron Activation Analysis and Particle Induced X-ray Emission were applied as sensitive analytical tools for the determination of heavy metals and rare earth elements in phosphorite and in the APM sampled in the harbour during the unloading operations. Results showed that manipulation of phosphorite during harbour operations resulted in high emissions of particles, principally from the coarse fraction. These emissions were enriched in rare earth elements and heavy metals and were very affected by the provenience of the phosphorite.

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