Articles | Volume 14, issue 13
Research article
01 Jul 2014
Research article |  | 01 Jul 2014

From emissions to ambient mixing ratios: online seasonal field measurements of volatile organic compounds over a Norway spruce-dominated forest in central Germany

E. Bourtsoukidis, J. Williams, J. Kesselmeier, S. Jacobi, and B. Bonn

Abstract. Biogenic volatile organic compounds (BVOCs) are substantial contributors to atmospheric chemistry and physics and demonstrate the close relationship between biosphere and atmosphere. Their emission rates are highly sensitive to meteorological and environmental changes with concomitant impacts on atmospheric chemistry. We have investigated seasonal isoprenoid and oxygenated VOC (oxVOC) fluxes from a Norway spruce (Picea abies) tree in central Germany and explored the emission responses under various atmospheric conditions. Emission rates were quantified by using dynamic branch enclosure and proton-transfer-reaction mass spectrometry (PTR-MS) techniques. Additionally, ambient mixing ratios were derived through application of a new box model treatment on the dynamic chamber measurements. These are compared in terms of abundance and origin with the corresponding emissions. Isoprenoids dominate the BVOC emissions from Norway spruce, with monoterpenes and sesquiterpenes accounting for 50.8 ± 7.2% and 19.8 ± 8.1% respectively of the total emissions. Normalizing the VOC emission rates, we have observed a trend of reduction of carbon-containing emissions from April to November, with an enhancement of oxVOC. Highest emission rates were observed in June for all measured species, with the exception of sesquiterpenes, which were emitted most strongly in April. Finally, we evaluate the temperature-dependent algorithm that seems to describe the temperature-dependent emissions of methanol, acetaldehyde and monoterpenes but only with the use of the monthly derived values for emission potential, Es, and temperature dependency, β factor.

Final-revised paper