Environmental Science & Technology, 40(10), 3148-3155, 2006.
Aerosol samples of PM2.5 and PM10 in a period of intensive haze-fog (HF) events were collected to investigate the chemical characteristics of air pollution in Beijing. The air quality in HF episodes was much worse than that in nonhaze-fog (NHF) days. The concentrations of elements and water-soluble (WS) ions (K+, SO42-, and NO3 -) in HF episodes were more than 10 times higher than those in NHF days. Most of the chemical species in PM2.5 and the secondary species (NH4+, SO42-, and NO3 -) in PM10 showed significant difference between HF from westerly direction (HFW) and southerly direction (HFS). The concentrations of secondary species in HFS were much higher than those in HFW, and other chemical species in HFS were lower than those in HFW. The sources of PM2.5 were more from areas on the regional scale due to its tendency for long-range transport, while PM10 was more limited to the local sources. Aerosol particles were more acidic in HFS and more alkaline in HFW. The secondary species were the major chemical components of the aerosol in HF episodes, and their concentrations increased in the order of NHF < HFW < HFS. High concentrations of the secondary aerosol in HF episodes were likely due to the higher sulfur and nitrogen oxidation rate in aqueous-phase reactions. The serious air pollution in HF episodes was strongly correlated with the meteorological conditions and the emissions of pollutants from anthropogenic sources.