Preprints
https://doi.org/10.5194/acp-2021-913
https://doi.org/10.5194/acp-2021-913

  02 Dec 2021

02 Dec 2021

Review status: this preprint is currently under review for the journal ACP.

Direct observations indicate photodegradable oxygenated VOCs as larger contributors to radicals and ozone production in the atmosphere

Wenjie Wang1,2, Bin Yuan1,3, Yuwen Peng1,3, Hang Su2, Yafang Cheng2, Suxia Yang1,3, Caihong Wu1,3, Jipeng Qi1,3, Fengxia Bao2, Yibo Huangfu1,3, Chaomin Wang1,3, Chenshuo Ye1, Zelong Wang1,3, Baolin Wang4, Xinming Wang5, Wei Song5, Weiwei Hu5, Peng Cheng6, Manni Zhu1,3, Junyun Zheng1,3, and Min Shao1,3 Wenjie Wang et al.
  • 1Institute for Environmental and Climate Research, Jinan University, Guangzhou 511443, China
  • 2Multiphase Chemistry Department, Max Planck Institute for Chemistry, Mainz 55128, Germany
  • 3Guangdong-Hongkong-Macau Joint Laboratory of Collaborative Innovation for Environmental Quality, Guangzhou, 511443, China
  • 4School of Environmental Science and Engineering, Qilu University of Technology, Jinan 250353, China
  • 5State Key Laboratory of Organic Geochemistry, Guangzhou Institute of Geochemistry, Chinese Academy of Sciences, Guangzhou 510640, China
  • 6Institute of Mass Spectrometry and Atmospheric Environment, Jinan University, Guangzhou 510632, China

Abstract. Volatile organic compounds (VOCs) regulate atmospheric oxidation capacity, and the reactions of VOCs are key in understanding ozone formation and its mitigation strategies. When evaluating its impact, most previous studies did not fully consider the role of oxygenated VOCs due to limitations of measurement technology. By using a proton-transfer-reaction time-of-flight mass spectrometer (PTR-ToF-MS) combined with gas chromatography mass spectrometer (GC-MS) technology, we are able to quantify a large number of oxygenated VOCs in a representative urban environment in southern China. Based on the new dataset, we find that non – formaldehyde (HCHO) OVOCs can contribute large fractions (22–44 %) of total ROX radical production, comparable or larger than the contributions from nitrous acid and formaldehyde. We demonstrate that constraints using OVOCs observations are essential in modeling radical and ozone production, as modelled OVOCs can be substantially lower than measurements, potentially due to primary emissions and/or missing secondary sources. Our results show that models without OVOC constraints using ambient measurements will underestimate P(ROX) and ozone production rate, and may also affect the determination of sensitivity regime in ozone formation. Therefore, a thorough quantification of photodegradable OVOCs species is in urgent need to understand accurately the ozone chemistry and to develop effective control strategies.

Wenjie Wang et al.

Status: final response (author comments only)

Comment types: AC – author | RC – referee | CC – community | EC – editor | CEC – chief editor | : Report abuse
  • RC1: 'Comment on acp-2021-913', Anonymous Referee #1, 13 Dec 2021
  • RC2: 'Comment on acp-2021-913', Anonymous Referee #2, 17 Dec 2021

Wenjie Wang et al.

Wenjie Wang et al.

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Short summary
From a thorough measurements of numerous oxygenated volatile organic compounds, we show that their photo-dissociation can be important for radical production and ozone formation in the atmosphere. This effect was underestimated in previous studies, as measurements of them were lacking.
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