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Issue 11, 2013
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Ultrafine particle concentrations in the surroundings of an urban area: comparing downwind to upwind conditions using Generalized Additive Models (GAMs)

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Abstract

The aim of this study was to investigate the influence of an urban area on ultrafine particle (UFP) concentration in nearby surrounding areas. We assessed how downwind and upwind conditions affect the UFP concentration at a site placed a few kilometres from the city border. Secondarily, we investigated the relationship among other meteorological factors, temporal variables and UFP. Data were collected for 44 days during 2008 and 2009 at a rural site placed about 3 kilometres from Bologna, in northern Italy. Measurements were performed using a spectrometer (FMPS TSI 3091). The average UFP number concentration was 11 776 (±7836) particles per cm3. We analysed the effect of wind direction in a multivariate Generalized Additive Model (GAM) adjusted for the principal meteorological parameters and temporal trends. An increase of about 25% in UFP levels was observed when the site was downwind of the urban area, compared with the levels observed when wind blew from rural areas. The size distribution of particles was also affected by the wind direction, showing higher concentration of small size particles when the wind blew from the urban area. The GAM showed a good fit to the data (R2 = 0.81). Model choice was via Akaike Information Criteria (AIC). The analysis also revealed that an approach based on meteorological data plus temporal trends improved the goodness of the fit of the model. In addition, the findings contribute to evidence on effects of exposure to ultrafine particles on a population living in city surroundings.

Graphical abstract: Ultrafine particle concentrations in the surroundings of an urban area: comparing downwind to upwind conditions using Generalized Additive Models (GAMs)

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Publication details

The article was received on 06 May 2013, accepted on 05 Sep 2013 and first published on 05 Sep 2013


Article type: Paper
DOI: 10.1039/C3EM00228D
Citation: Environ. Sci.: Processes Impacts, 2013,15, 2087-2095
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    Ultrafine particle concentrations in the surroundings of an urban area: comparing downwind to upwind conditions using Generalized Additive Models (GAMs)

    C. Sartini, S. Z. Sajani, I. Ricciardelli, J. M. Delgado-Saborit, F. Scotto, A. Trentini, S. Ferrari and V. Poluzzi, Environ. Sci.: Processes Impacts, 2013, 15, 2087
    DOI: 10.1039/C3EM00228D

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