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Atmospheric Chemistry and Physics










Understanding organic composition of gases and particles is essential to identifying sources and atmospheric processing leading to organic aerosols (OA), but atmospheric chemical complexity and the analytical techniques available often limit such analysis. Here we present speciated measurements of semivolatileand intermediate volatility organic compounds (S/IVOCs) using a novel dual-use instrument (SV-TAG-AMS) deployed at Manitou Forest, CO, during the Bio-hydro-atmosphere interactions of Energy, Aerosols, Carbon, H2O, Organics & Nitrogen – Rocky Mountain Biogenic Aerosol Study (BEACHON-RoMBAS) 2011campaign. This instrument provides on-line speciation of ambient organiccompounds with 2 h time resolution. The species in this volatility range are complex in composition, but their chemical identities reveal potential sources. Observed compounds of biogenic origin include sesquiterpenes with molecular formula C15H24 (e.g., β-caryophyllene and longifolene), which were most abundant at night. A variety of other biogenic compounds were observed, including sesquiterpenoids with molecular formula C15H22, abietatriene and other terpenoidcompounds. Many of these compounds have been identified in essential oils and branch enclosure studies but were observed in ambient air for the first timein our study. Semivolatile polycyclic aromatic hydrocarbons (PAHs) and alkanes were observed with highest concentrations during the day and the dependence on temperature suggests the role of an evaporative source. Using statistical analysis by positive matrix factorization (PMF), we classify observed S/IVOCs by their likely sources and processes, and characterize them based on chemical composition. The total mass concentration of elutable S/IVOCs was estimated to be on the order of 0.7 µg m−3 and their volatility distributions are estimated for modeling aerosol formation chemistry.