Coarse particles of aerodynamic diameter between 2.5 and 10 μm (PM c) are produced by a range of natural (windblown dust and sea sprays) and anthropogenic processes (non-exhaust vehicle emissions, industrial, agriculture, construction and quarrying activities). Although current ambient air quality regulations focus on PM 2.5 and PM 10, coarse particles are of interest from a public health point of view as they have been associated with certain mortality and morbidity outcomes.In this paper, an analysis of coarse particle levels in three European capitals (London, Madrid and Athens) is presented and discussed. For all three cities we analysed data from both traffic and urban background monitoring sites. The results showed that the levels of coarse particles present significant seasonal, weekly and daily variability. Their wind driven and non-wind driven resuspension as well as their roadside increment due to traffic were estimated. Both the local meteorological conditions and the air mass history indicating long-range atmospheric transport of particles of natural origin are significant parameters that influence the levels of coarse particles in the three cities especially during episodic events.
Copyright 2012 Elsevier B.V., All rights reserved.
- Coarse particles
- Particulate matter
- Urban atmosphere
- Vehicle emissions