Traffic-related airborne VOC profiles variation on road sites and residential area within a microscale in urban area in Southern Taiwan

Jiun Horng Tsai, Yen Ting Lu, I. I. Chung, Hung Lung Chiang

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

Abstract

The sampling sites, including roadsides and residential areas, were set up to collect ambient air and determine the volatile organic species it contained. For the roadside air, the average VOCs (volatile organic compounds) abundant at rush hour periods was two times that at non-rush hour periods. In the residential area, the VOC concentrationswere106 and 129 ppb during rush hour periods. The VOC concentration ratios of roadside and residential areas were in the range of 1.08-1.75 and the traffic emissions were related to the VOCs abundant in air. The highest VOC concentration was 168 ppb at midnight at residential sites and the VOC abundance could be two times that of roadside sites. This level of concentration could be attributed to the application of solvents and to human activity in a nearby motorcycle/vehicle maintenance plant, laundry rooms, etc. High abundant species were similar in both the roadside and residential air samples. These highly abundant species included toluene, acetone, acetonitrile, m, p-xylene and n-pentane, all of which can be emitted from traffic exhaust. Benzene, acrolein, formaldehyde, vinyl chloride and 1,3-butadiene were the main species with health impacts collected at both sites. In the micro-scale environment, the residential ambient air was affected by traffic flow from morning to night. In the midnight period, some local activities (a motorcycle/vehicle maintenance shop and laundry shops) affected the concentrations of certain VOCs (acetonitrile, toluene, hexane, 2-methylpentane, methyl cyclopentane and 3-methylpentane). The traffic and motor vehicles' effects were determined, which could be useful for air quality management and strategy development in an urban area.

Original languageEnglish
Article number1015
JournalAtmosphere
Volume11
Issue number9
DOIs
Publication statusPublished - 2020 Sep

All Science Journal Classification (ASJC) codes

  • Environmental Science (miscellaneous)

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