Document Type

Article

Publication Date

3-2018

Publication Title

Atmospheric Chemistry and Physics

ISSN

1680-7324

Volume

18

Issue

5

DOI

http://dx.doi.org/10.5194/acp-18-3299-2018

Abstract

Volatile and intermediate-volatility non-methane organic gases (NMOGs) released from biomass burning were measured during laboratory-simulated wildfires by proton-transfer-reaction time-of-flight mass spectrometry (PTR-ToF). We identified NMOG contributors to more than 150 PTR ion masses using gas chromatography (GC) pre-separation with electron ionization, H3O+ chemical ionization, and NO+ chemical ionization, an extensive literature review, and time series correlation, providing higher certainty for ion identifications than has been previously available. Our interpretation of the PTR-ToF mass spectrum accounts for nearly 90 % of NMOG mass detected by PTR-ToF across all fuel types. The relative contributions of different NMOGs to individual exact ion masses are mostly similar across many fires and fuel types. The PTR-ToF measurements are compared to corresponding measurements from open-path Fourier transform infrared spectroscopy (OP-FTIR), broadband cavity-enhanced spectroscopy (ACES), and iodide ion chemical ionization mass spectrometry (I− CIMS) where possible. The majority of comparisons have slopes near 1 and values of the linear correlation coefficient, R2, of  >  0.8, including compounds that are not frequently reported by PTR-MS such as ammonia, hydrogen cyanide (HCN), nitrous acid (HONO), and propene. The exceptions include methylglyoxal and compounds that are known to be difficult to measure with one or more of the deployed instruments. The fire-integrated emission ratios to CO and emission factors of NMOGs from 18 fuel types are provided. Finally, we provide an overview of the chemical characteristics of detected species. Non-aromatic oxygenated compounds are the most abundant. Furans and aromatics, while less abundant, comprise a large portion of the OH reactivity. The OH reactivity, its major contributors, and the volatility distribution of emissions can change considerably over the course of a fire.

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Creative Commons Attribution 4.0 License
This work is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution 4.0 License.

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