Optical properties of dispersed aerosols in the near ultraviolet (355 nm): Measurement approach and initial data

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An aerosol albedometer combining cavity ring-down spectroscopy (CRDS) with integrating sphere nephelometry was developed for use at λ = 355 nm. The instrument measures extinction and scattering coefficients of dispersed particulate matter in the near ultraviolet (UV) spectral region. Several samples have been analyzed, including: ammonium sulfate, secondary organic aerosols (SOA) resulting from the ozonolysis of α-pinene and photooxidation of toluene, redispersed soil dust samples, biomass burning aerosols, and ambient aerosols. When particle size and number density were experimentally controlled, extinction coefficients and scattering coefficients were found to have a linear relationship with particle number concentration, in good agreement with light scattering theory. For ammonium sulfate and pinene samples, extinction cross sections for size-selected (D p = 300 nm) samples were within the range of 1.65-2.60 × 10 -9 cm 2 with the largest value corresponding to ammonium sulfate and the lowest value for pinene SOA. The scattering cross sections of pinene and ammonium sulfate aerosols were indistinguishable from the extinction cross sections, indicating that these particle types had minimal light absorption at 355 nm. However, soil dusts and biomass burning aerosols showed significant absorption with single scatter albedo (SSA) between 0.74 and 0.84. Ambient aerosols also had transient absorption at 355 nm that correlated well with a particle-soot absorption photometer (PSAP) measuring visible light absorption.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)5611-5617
Number of pages7
JournalAnalytical Chemistry
Issue number13
StatePublished - Jul 3 2012


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