Influence of biomass burning from South Asia at a high-altitude mountain receptor site in China
- 1State Key Joint Laboratory of Environmental Simulation and Pollution Control, College of Environmental Sciences and Engineering, Peking University, Beijing, China
- 2Key Laboratory for Urban Habitat Environmental Science and Technology, School of Environment and Energy, Peking University Shenzhen Graduate School, Shenzhen, China
- 3State Key Laboratory of Atmospheric Boundary Layer Physics and Atmospheric Chemistry (LAPC), Nansen-Zhu International Research Center (NZC), Institute of Atmospheric Physics, Chinese Academy of Sciences, Beijing, China
- anow at: John A. Paulson School of Engineering and Applied Sciences, Harvard University, Cambridge, MA 02138, USA
Abstract. Highly time-resolved in situ measurements of airborne particles were conducted at Mt. Yulong (3410 m above sea level) on the southeastern edge of the Tibetan Plateau in China from 22 March to 14 April 2015. The detailed chemical composition was measured by a high-resolution time-of-flight aerosol mass spectrometer together with other online instruments. The average mass concentration of the submicron particles (PM1) was 5.7 ± 5.4 µg m−3 during the field campaign, ranging from 0.1 up to 33.3 µg m−3. Organic aerosol (OA) was the dominant component in PM1, with a fraction of 68 %. Three OA factors, i.e., biomass burning organic aerosol (BBOA), biomass-burning-influenced oxygenated organic aerosol (OOA-BB) and oxygenated organic aerosol (OOA), were resolved using positive matrix factorization analysis. The two oxygenated OA factors accounted for 87 % of the total OA mass. Three biomass burning events were identified by examining the enhancement of black carbon concentrations and the f60 (the ratio of the signal at m∕z 60 from the mass spectrum to the total signal of OA). Back trajectories of air masses and satellite fire map data were integrated to identify the biomass burning locations and pollutant transport. The western air masses from South Asia with active biomass burning activities transported large amounts of air pollutants, resulting in elevated organic concentrations up to 4-fold higher than those of the background conditions. This study at Mt. Yulong characterizes the tropospheric background aerosols of the Tibetan Plateau during pre-monsoon season and provides clear evidence that the southeastern edge of the Tibetan Plateau was affected by the transport of anthropogenic aerosols from South Asia.