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© Author(s) 2020. This work is distributed under
the Creative Commons Attribution 4.0 License.
© Author(s) 2020. This work is distributed under
the Creative Commons Attribution 4.0 License.

  26 May 2020

26 May 2020

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This preprint is currently under review for the journal ACP.

Aqueous phase behavior of glyoxal and methylglyoxal observed with carbon and oxygen K-edge X-ray absorption spectroscopy

Georgia Michailoudi1, Jack J. Lin1, Hayato Yuzawa2, Masanari Nagasaka2, Marko Huttula1, Nobuhiro Kosugi2, Theo Kurtén3, Minna Patanen1, and Nønne L. Prisle1 Georgia Michailoudi et al.
  • 1Nano and Molecular Systems Research Unit, University of Oulu, P.O. Box 3000, 90014 Oulu, Finland
  • 2Institute for Molecular Science, Myodaiji, Okazaki 444-8585, Japan
  • 3Department of Chemistry and Institute for Atmospheric and Earth System Research (INAR), University of Helsinki, P.O. Box 55, 00014 Helsinki, Finland

Abstract. Glyoxal (CHOCHO) and methylglyoxal (CH3C(O)CHO) are well-known components of atmospheric particles and their properties can impact atmospheric chemistry and cloud formation. To get information on their hydration states in aqueous solutions and how they are affected by addition of inorganic salts (sodium chloride (NaCl) and sodium sulfate (Na2SO4)), we applied carbon and oxygen K-edge X-ray absorption spectroscopy (XAS) in transmission mode. The recorded C K-edge spectra show that glyoxal is completely hydrated in the dilute aqueous solutions, in line with previous studies. For methylglyoxal, we identified, supported by quantum chemical calculations, not only C-H, C=O and C-OH bonds, but also fingerprints of C-OH(CH2) and C=C bonds. This implies the presence of both mono- and dihydrated forms of methylglyoxal, as well as products of aldol condensation, and enol tautomers of the monohydrates. The addition of salts was found to introduce only very minor changes to absorption energies and relative intensities of the observed absorption features, indicating that the organic-inorganic interactions at the studied concentrations are not strong enough to affect the spectra in this work. The identified structures of glyoxal and methylglyoxal in aqueous environment support the uptake of these compounds to the aerosol phase in the presence of water and their contribution on secondary organic aerosol formation.

Georgia Michailoudi et al.

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Georgia Michailoudi et al.

Georgia Michailoudi et al.


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Publications Copernicus
Short summary
This study provides insight into hydration of two significant atmospheric compounds, glyoxal and methylglyoxal. Using synchrotron radiation excited X-ray absorption spectroscopy, we confirm that glyoxal is fully hydrated in water, and for the first time, we experimentally detect enol structures in aqueous methylglyoxal. Our results support the contribution of these compounds to secondary organic aerosol formation, known to have a large uncertainty in atmospheric models and climate predictions.
This study provides insight into hydration of two significant atmospheric compounds, glyoxal and...