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Sci Total Environ. 2007 Sep 20;383(1-3):141-63. Epub 2007 Jun 13.

Aerosol optical depth, aerosol composition and air pollution during summer and winter conditions in Budapest.

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Hungarian Academy of Sciences, KFKI Atomic Energy Research Institute, Budapest, Hungary.


The dependence of aerosol optical depth (AOD) on air particulate concentrations in the mixing layer height (MLH) was studied in Budapest in July 2003 and January 2004. During the campaigns gaseous (CO, SO(2), NO(x), O(3)), solid components (PM(2.5), PM(10)), as well as ionic species (ammonium, sulfate and nitrate) were measured at several urban and suburban sites. Additional data were collected from the Budapest air quality monitoring network. AOD was measured by a ground-based sun photometer. The mixing layer height and other common meteorological parameters were recorded. A linear relationship was found between the AOD and the columnar aerosol burden; the best linear fit (R(2)=0.96) was obtained for the secondary sulfate aerosol due to its mostly homogeneous spatial distribution and its optically active size range. The linear relationship is less pronounced for the PM(2.5) and PM(10) fractions since local emissions are very heterogeneous in time and space. The results indicate the importance of the mixing layer height in determining pollutant concentrations. During the winter campaign, when the boundary layer decreases to levels in between the altitudes of the sampling stations, measured concentrations showed significant differences due to different local sources and long-range transport. In the MLH time series unexpected nocturnal peaks were observed. The nocturnal increase of the MLH coincided with decreasing concentrations of all pollutants except for ozone; the ozone concentration increase indicates nocturnal vertical mixing between different air layers.

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