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Source apportionment of particulate matter by positive matrix factorisation in the Lower Fraser Valley of British Columbia Ostermann, Kathryn Ann

Abstract

Particulate pollution is of great concern for its impact on health as well as on visibility. Particulate matter less than 2.5 um in diameter (PM2.5) has been identified as an issue of concern in the Lower Fraser Valley of British Columbia. In response to these concerns, a year-long study of PM2.5 entitled REVEAL II was conducted from April 1994 to May 1995. Samples taken at Chilliwack and Abbotsford were analysed for mass, elements, ions, and organic and elemental carbon. A new type of receptor model, Positive Matrix Factorisation(PMF), is applied to this data to garner information on sources of PM2.5 in the valley. Information on species concentrations and errors associated with them are used to estimate source profiles and source contributions. The same 7 factors were identified at both sites. Average contributions at Chilliwack and Abbotsford are given respectively in parentheses: gasoline vehicles (23-36%), secondary nitrate (26-29%), sulphate (14-13%), burning (16-5%), soil/road dust (8-6%), diesel (7-3%) and marine (5-7%). The results are also analysed with wind data. The final result was based on a sensitivity analysis of the model output to changes in a certain parameter. Predicted average source contributions are compared with other studies on the same or similar datasets.

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