A functional group characterization of organic PM2.5 exposure: Results from the RIOPA study

Journal Article

The functional group (FG) composition of urban residential outdoor, indoor, and personal fine particle (PM2.5) samples is presented and used to provide insights relevant to organic PM2.5 exposure. PM2.5 samples (48 h) were collected during the Relationship of Indoor, Outdoor, and Personal Air (RIOPA) study at 219 non-smoking homes (once or twice) in Los Angeles County, CA, Elizabeth, NJ, and Houston, TX. Fourier transform infrared (FTIR) spectra of PM2.5 samples were collected, and FG absorbances were quantified by partial least squares (PLS) regression, a multivariate calibration method. There is growing evidence in the literature that a large majority of indoor-generated PM2.5 is organic. The current research suggests that indoor-generated PM2.5 is enriched in aliphatic carbon-hydrogen (CH) FGs relative to ambient outdoor PM2.5. Indoor-generated CH exceeded outdoor-generated CH in 144 of the 167 homes for which indoor or outdoor CH was measurable; estimated indoor emission rates are provided. The strong presence of aliphatic CH FGs in indoor PM2.5 makes particulate organic matter substantially less polar indoors and in personal exposures than outdoors. This is a substantial new finding. Based on the quantified FGs, the average organic molecular weight (OM) per carbon weight (OC), a measure of the degree of oxygenation of organic PM, is in the range of 1.7-2.6 for outdoor samples and 1.3-1.7 for indoor and personal samples. Polarity or degree of oxygenation effects particle deposition in exposure environments and in the respiratory system. © 2007 Elsevier Ltd. All rights reserved.

Full Text

Duke Authors

Cited Authors

  • Reff, A; Turpin, BJ; Offenberg, JH; Weisel, CP; Zhang, J; Morandi, M; Stock, T; Colome, S; Winer, A

Published Date

  • July 1, 2007

Published In

Volume / Issue

  • 41 / 22

Start / End Page

  • 4585 - 4598

International Standard Serial Number (ISSN)

  • 1352-2310

Digital Object Identifier (DOI)

  • 10.1016/j.atmosenv.2007.03.054

Citation Source

  • Scopus