Canyonlands Research Bibliography


Apportionment of Sulfur Oxides at Canyonlands During the Winter of 1990--I. Study Design and Particulate Chemical Composition

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Atmospheric Environment





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Spherical aluminosilicate (SAS) particles, total fluoride and particulate trace elements are potential endemic tracers for determining and quantifying the presence of coal-fired power plant and other sulfur oxide source emissions at far downwind distances. These endemic tracers, and sulfate and SO2 were collected at Canyonlands National Park, at seven ambient sampling sites located in air mass transport paths to Canyonlands and from the stacks of coal-fired power plants in central Utah during January-March of 1990 for use in source apportionment analyses. These data have been combined with results obtained in concurrent studies by the National Park Service (EPIC study) and Salt River Project to provide a complete data set for the characterization of the regional and point sources that can influence air quality in the Canyonlands area. This paper gives details on the study design and on the chemical composition of fine particulate matter in the study area. While concentrations of SOx(SO2(g) plus particulate sulfate) were in good agreement among the various studies, accurate concentrations for sulfate and SO2 were only obtained using a diffusion denuder sampling system because of the absorption of SO2(g) by particles in all filter pack sampling systems. Concentrations of FTTotal (HF(g) plus particulate fluoride), and particulate Se, As, and Pb determined by multiple techniques were generally in good agreement. Sulfate (assumed present as ammonium sulfate) and nitrate (assumed present as ammonium nitrate) accounted for an average of 19 and 4%, respectively, of the fine particulate mass collected at Canyonlands and 8 and 2% of the fine particulate mass at Green River, Utah. Data were available at the Edge of the Cedars, Utah, sampling site to estimate the complete chemical composition of the fine particles. The average concentration of fine particles at Edge of the Cedars was 15 μg m−3. Sulfate (as the ammonium salt) averaged 15% of the fine particulate mass, comparable to Canyonlands. Nonsulfate inorganic compounds averaged 58% of the mass. The majority of these inorganic species are background desert particles. The remainder of the mass, 27%, is presumably water, and organic and elemental carbon.


Originally published by Elsevier.