Signatures of terminal alkene oxidation in airbone formaldehyde measurements during TexAQS 2000

B. P. Wert, M. Trainer, A. Fried, T. B. Ryerson, B. Henry, W. Potter, W. M. Angevine, E. Atlas, S. G. Donnelly, F. C. Fehsenfeld, G. J. Frost, P. D. Goldan, A. Hansel, J. S. Holloway, G. Hubler, W. C. Kuster, D. K. Nicks, J. A. Neuman, D. D. Parrish, S. SchaufflerJ. Stutz, D. T. Sueper, C. Wiedinmyer, A. Wisthaler

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle

112 Scopus citations

Abstract

Airborne formaldehyde (CH2O) measurements were made by tunable diode laser absorption spectroscopy (TDLAS) at high time resolution (1 and 10 s) and precision (±400 and ±120 parts per trillion by volume (pptv) (2σ), respectively) during the Texas Air Quality Study (TexAQS) 2000. Measurement accuracy was corroborated by in-flight calibrations and zeros and by overflight comparison with a ground-based differential optical absorption spectroscopy (DOAS) system. Throughout the campaign, the highest levels of CH2O precursors and volatile organic compound (VOC) reactivity were measured in petrochemical plumes. Correspondingly, CH2O and ozone production was greatly enhanced in petrochemical plumes compared with plumes dominated by power plant and mobile source emissions. The photochemistry of several isolated petrochemical facility plumes was accurately modeled using three nonmethane hydrocarbons (NMHCs) (ethene (C2H4), propene (C3H6) (both anthropogenic), and isoprene (C5H8) (biogenic)) and was in accord with standard hydroxyl radical (OH)-initiated chemistry. Measurement-inferred facility emissions of ethene and propene were far larger than reported by inventories. Substantial direct CH2O emissions were not detected from petrochemical facilities. The rapid production of CH2O and ozone observed in a highly polluted plume (30+ parts per billion by volume (ppbv) CH2O and 200+ ppbv ozone) originating over Houston was well replicated by a model employing only two NMHCs, ethene and propene.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)ACH 8-1 - ACH 8-14
JournalJournal of Geophysical Research D: Atmospheres
Volume108
Issue number3
StatePublished - Feb 16 2003
Externally publishedYes

Keywords

  • Alkene oxidation
  • Formaldehyde
  • Petrochemical facility emissions
  • Tropospheric oxidation
  • Urban pollution

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Geophysics
  • Forestry
  • Oceanography
  • Aquatic Science
  • Ecology
  • Water Science and Technology
  • Soil Science
  • Geochemistry and Petrology
  • Earth-Surface Processes
  • Atmospheric Science
  • Earth and Planetary Sciences (miscellaneous)
  • Space and Planetary Science
  • Palaeontology

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    Wert, B. P., Trainer, M., Fried, A., Ryerson, T. B., Henry, B., Potter, W., Angevine, W. M., Atlas, E., Donnelly, S. G., Fehsenfeld, F. C., Frost, G. J., Goldan, P. D., Hansel, A., Holloway, J. S., Hubler, G., Kuster, W. C., Nicks, D. K., Neuman, J. A., Parrish, D. D., ... Wisthaler, A. (2003). Signatures of terminal alkene oxidation in airbone formaldehyde measurements during TexAQS 2000. Journal of Geophysical Research D: Atmospheres, 108(3), ACH 8-1 - ACH 8-14.