Aging of Volatile Organic Compounds in October 2017 Northern California Wildfire Plumes. Liang, Y., Weber, R. J., Misztal, P. K., Jen, C. N., & Goldstein, A. H. Environmental Science & Technology, 56(3):1557–1567, February, 2022. Publisher: American Chemical Society
Aging of Volatile Organic Compounds in October 2017 Northern California Wildfire Plumes [link]Paper  doi  abstract   bibtex   
In the western United States, the number and severity of large wildfires have been growing for decades. Biomass burning (BB) is a major source of volatile organic compounds (VOCs) to the atmosphere both globally and regionally. Following emission, BB VOCs are oxidized while being transported downwind, producing ozone, secondary organic aerosols, and secondary hazardous VOCs. In this research, we measured VOCs using proton transfer reaction time-of-flight mass spectrometry (PTR-ToF-MS) in an urban area 55–65 km downwind of the October 2017 Northern California wildfires. Nonaromatic oxygenated compounds were the dominant component of BB VOCs measured. In the smoke plumes, the VOCs account for 70–75% of the total observed organic carbon, with the remainder being particulate matter (with a diameter of \textless2.5 μm, PM2.5). We show that the correlation of VOCs with furan (primary BB VOC) and maleic anhydride (secondary BB VOC) can indicate the origin of the VOCs. This was further confirmed by the diurnal variations of the VOCs and their concentration-weighted trajectories. Oxidation during transport consumed highly reactive compounds including benzenoids, furanoids, and terpenoids and produced more oxygenated VOCs. Furthermore, wildfire VOCs altered the ozone formation regime and raised the O3 levels in the San Francisco Bay Area.
@article{liang_aging_2022,
	title = {Aging of {Volatile} {Organic} {Compounds} in {October} 2017 {Northern} {California} {Wildfire} {Plumes}},
	volume = {56},
	issn = {0013-936X},
	url = {https://doi.org/10.1021/acs.est.1c05684},
	doi = {10.1021/acs.est.1c05684},
	abstract = {In the western United States, the number and severity of large wildfires have been growing for decades. Biomass burning (BB) is a major source of volatile organic compounds (VOCs) to the atmosphere both globally and regionally. Following emission, BB VOCs are oxidized while being transported downwind, producing ozone, secondary organic aerosols, and secondary hazardous VOCs. In this research, we measured VOCs using proton transfer reaction time-of-flight mass spectrometry (PTR-ToF-MS) in an urban area 55–65 km downwind of the October 2017 Northern California wildfires. Nonaromatic oxygenated compounds were the dominant component of BB VOCs measured. In the smoke plumes, the VOCs account for 70–75\% of the total observed organic carbon, with the remainder being particulate matter (with a diameter of {\textless}2.5 μm, PM2.5). We show that the correlation of VOCs with furan (primary BB VOC) and maleic anhydride (secondary BB VOC) can indicate the origin of the VOCs. This was further confirmed by the diurnal variations of the VOCs and their concentration-weighted trajectories. Oxidation during transport consumed highly reactive compounds including benzenoids, furanoids, and terpenoids and produced more oxygenated VOCs. Furthermore, wildfire VOCs altered the ozone formation regime and raised the O3 levels in the San Francisco Bay Area.},
	number = {3},
	urldate = {2022-03-18},
	journal = {Environmental Science \& Technology},
	author = {Liang, Yutong and Weber, Robert J. and Misztal, Pawel K. and Jen, Coty N. and Goldstein, Allen H.},
	month = feb,
	year = {2022},
	note = {Publisher: American Chemical Society},
	pages = {1557--1567},
}

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