Using monosaccharide anhydrides to estimate the impact of wood combustion on fine particles in the Helsinki Metropolitan Area

Karri Saarnio, Jarkko V. Niemi, Sanna Saarikoski, Minna Aurela, Hilkka Timonen, Kimmo Teinilä, Maria Myllynen, Anna Frey, Heikki Lamberg, Jorma Jokiniemi, Risto Hillamo

Research output: Contribution to journalArticleScientificpeer-review

29 Citations (Scopus)

Abstract

The spatiotemporal variation of ambient particles under the influence of biomass burning emissions was studied in the Helsinki Metropolitan Area (HMA) in selected periods during 2005-2009. Monosaccharide anhydrides (MAs; levoglucosan, mannosan and galactosan), commonly known biomass burning tracers, were used to estimate the wood combustion contribution to local particulate matter (PM) concentration levels at three urban background sites close to the city centre, and at three suburban sites influenced by local small-scale wood combustion. In the cold season (October-March), the mean MAs concentrations were 115-225 ng m -3 and 83-98 ng m -3 at the suburban and urban sites, respectively. In the warm season, the mean MAs concentrations were low (19-78 ng m -3), excluding open land fire smoke episodes (222-378 ng m -3). Regionally distributed wood combustion particles raised the levels over the whole HMA while particles from local wood combustion sources raised the level at suburban sites only. The estimated average contribution of wood combustion to fine particles (PM2.5) ranged from 18% to 29% at the urban sites and from 31% to 66% at the suburban sites in the cold season. The PM measurements from ambient air and combustion experiments showed that the proportions of the three MAs can be utilised to separate the wildfire particles from residential wood combustion particles.
Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)163-183
JournalBoreal Environment Research
Volume17
Issue number3-4
Publication statusPublished - 2012
MoE publication typeA1 Journal article-refereed

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