Mass and trace element size distributions of aerosols emitted by a hospital refuse incinerator

Esko Kauppinen, Tuomo Pakkanen

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Mass and elemental size distributions of hospital refuse incineration aerosols were measured in the aerodynamic particle size range 0.02–17 μm with an in-stack compressible flow, low pressure impactor. Oil was used as a supplementary fuel in the refuse combustion process and flue gases were cleaned with a cyclone. Mass size distributions were bimodal.
The geometric aerodynamic mean diameter of the fine mode varied between 0.1 and 0.2 μm and the corresponding coarse mode mean between 6 and 10 μm. Mg, Al, Cl, Ti and Fe were found only in coarse mode particles. Elemental size distributions of Na, K, Zn, Cd, Pb and S were bimodal.
Over 90% of the particle phase of S, 20–80% of Zn, 62–77% of Cd and 7–74% of Pb, respectively, were found in the fine mode particles.
This existence of the fine mode peak in the size distributions of Na, K, Zn, Cd, Pb and S indicates that at least part of these elements vaporizes during the refuse incineration process.
Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)423-429
JournalAtmospheric Environment Part A: General Topics
Issue number2
Publication statusPublished - 1990
MoE publication typeA1 Journal article-refereed



  • aerosols

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