Trace elements in PM 2.5 aerosols in East Asian outflow in the spring of 2018: emission, transport, and source apportionment

Miyakawa, Takuma; Ito, Akinori; Zhu, Chunmao; Shimizu, Atsushi; Matsumoto, Erika; Mizuno, Yusuke; Kanaya, Yugo

Trace metals in aerosol particles impact Earth's radiative budget, human health, and ocean biogeochemistry. Semi-continuous measurements of the elemental composition of fine-mode (PMinline-formula2.5) aerosols were conducted using an automated X-ray fluorescence analyzer on a remote island of Japan during the spring of 2018. Temporal variations in mass concentrations of geochemically important elements for this period, such as Pb, Cu, Si, Fe, and Mn, and their relationships with the emission tracers, carbon monoxide (CO) and black carbon (BC), were reported. The Integrated Massively Parallel Atmospheric Chemical Transport (IMPACT) model was used to evaluate the source apportionment of these components and was evaluated in terms of emissions and wet removal processes. Pb and Cu originated mainly from anthropogenic sources (98 % and 93 % on average, respectively) over the East Asian continent. Positive correlations of Pb and Cu with BC and CO and the similarity of their concentration-weighted trajectories indicated that the emission sources of these metals share the region where the large CO (and BC) emission sources are located and that CO can be regarded as a tracer of continental anthropogenic emissions. The air masses with minimized impacts of the wet removal during transport were extracted to elucidate the “top-down” emission ratio of Pb and Cu to CO, which were, for the first time, evaluated as 152.7 and 63.1 inline-formulaµg ginline-formula−1, respectively, during the spring of 2018 in the East Asian outflow. The analysis of the tagged tracer simulations by the IMPACT model confirmed that BC and Si could be used as tracers for anthropogenic and dust emissions, respectively, during the observation period. The source apportionment of Fe and Mn in PMinline-formula2.5 aerosols was conducted using Si and BC tracers, which revealed that the anthropogenic contribution was 17 % and 44 % on average, respectively. Based on the air mass origins of Fe and Mn, their anthropogenic fraction varied from 2 % to 29 % and 9 % to 68 %, respectively, during the high-PMinline-formula2.5-concentration periods. However, despite the non-dominant anthropogenic contributions of Fe, they could adversely affect human health and ocean biogeochemistry, owing to their higher water solubility. The modeled BC, Pb, Cu, and Fe were evaluated by separately diagnosing their emission and transport. Ratios of modeled to observed concentrations for these components were analyzed in terms of the accumulated precipitation along the transport from the East Asian continent. The current model simulations were found to overestimate the emissions (based on the Community Emissions Data System, CEDS v2021-02-05) of BC by 44 % and underestimate Cu by 45 %, anthropogenic Fe by 28 % in East Asia, and the wet deposition rates for BC and Pb. Overall, Cu in East Asia exhibited a different nature from BC and Pb in terms of emission sources and wet removal.

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Miyakawa, Takuma / Ito, Akinori / Zhu, Chunmao / et al: Trace elements in PM2.5 aerosols in East Asian outflow in the spring of 2018: emission, transport, and source apportionment. 2023. Copernicus Publications.

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