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Intercomparison of Thermal and Optical Measurement Methods for Elemental Carbon and Black Carbon at an Urban Location

Hitzenberger, Regina and Petzold, Andreas and Bauer, Heidi and Ctyroky, Peter and Pouresmaeil, P. and Laskus, L. and Puxbaum, Hans (2006) Intercomparison of Thermal and Optical Measurement Methods for Elemental Carbon and Black Carbon at an Urban Location. Environmental Science and Technology, 40 (20), pp. 6377-6383. DOI: 10.1021/es051228v.

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Official URL: http://pubs.acs.org/cgi-bin/article.cgi/esthag/2006/40/i20/pdf/es051228v.pdf


Despite intensive efforts during the past 20 years, no generally accepted standard method exists to measure black carbon (BC) or elemental carbon (EC). Data on BC and EC concentrations are method specific and can differ widely (e.g. Schmid et al., 2001, ten Brink et al., 2004). In this study, a comprehensive set of methods (both optical and thermal) is compared. Measurements were performed under urban background conditions in Vienna, Austria, a city heavily impacted by diesel emissions. Filter and impactor samples were taken during 3 weeks in summer 2002 and analyzed for EC with thermal methods: a modified Cachier method (Cachier et al., 1989), a thermal-optical method (Schmid et al., 2001), and the VDI method (VDI, 1996); for BC with optical methods: a filter transmission method and the integrating sphere method (Hitzenberger et al., 1996); and for total carbon (TC) with a combustion method (Puxbaum and Rendl, 1983). The online methods aethalometer (Hansen et al., 1984) and the multiangle absorption photometer MAAP (Petzold et al., 2002) to measure BC were also used. The average values of BC and EC obtained with the methods agreed within their standard deviations. A conversion table was set up to allow comparisons between data measured elsewhere under urban background conditions (with similar source characteristics) with different instruments. An approach to estimate the absorption coefficient from attenuation data is derived so that existing records of aethalometer data in urban environments may be used to obtain also the absorption coefficients.

Document Type:Article
Title:Intercomparison of Thermal and Optical Measurement Methods for Elemental Carbon and Black Carbon at an Urban Location
AuthorsInstitution or Email of Authors
Hitzenberger, ReginaUniv. Wien, Wien, A
Petzold, AndreasUNSPECIFIED
Bauer, HeidiTU Wien, Wien, A
Ctyroky, PeterUniv. Wien, Wien, A
Pouresmaeil, P.TU Wien, Wien, A
Laskus, L.Umweltbundesamt, Berlin
Puxbaum, HansTU Wien, Wien, A
Date:October 2006
Journal or Publication Title:Environmental Science and Technology
Page Range:pp. 6377-6383
Keywords:atmospheric aerosol, black carbon, elemental carbon, measurement techniques
HGF - Research field:Aeronautics, Space and Transport
HGF - Program:Aeronautics
HGF - Program Themes:L VU - Air Traffic and Environment (old)
DLR - Research area:Aeronautics
DLR - Program:L VU - Air Traffic and Environment
DLR - Research theme (Project):L - Air Traffic and Weather (old)
Location: Oberpfaffenhofen
Institutes and Institutions:Institute of Atmospheric Physics > Atmospheric Trace Species
Deposited By: Dr.rer.nat. Markus Fiebig
Deposited On:11 Dec 2006
Last Modified:12 Dec 2013 20:22

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