Characterisation of urban airborne particulate using automated mineralogical analysis
In 2013, Williamson, Rollinson and Pirrie published the first automated mineralogical/phase assessment of urban airborne PM10 and a new method for determining particle surface mineralogy (PSM) which is a major control on PM toxicity in the lung (Williamson et al., 2013). Particulate was analysed on a TEOM filter (Aug.–Sept. 2006 collection) using a QEMSCAN® automated mineralogical analysis system. A total of 381981 points of analysis were undertaken on 14525 particles in the size ranges PM10-4, PM4-2.5 and PM2.5-0.8. The method had a detection limit for individual mineral components of 0.05 ppm (by area). PM10-4 made up 94 % and 79 % of the mineral mass and surface area, respectively, whilst PM2.5-0.8 contained 2 orders of magnitude more particles than PM10-4 and PM4-2.5. PSM of the PM10 was dominated by gypsum (36 %), plagioclase (16 %), Na sulphates (8 %) and Fe-S-O phases (8 %) in the PM10-2.5, which may be important in explaining the toxicity of the coarse fraction.
Figures 2. Table 1. References 8.
Key words: urban particle, automated mineralogical analysis, toxicity.
МINERALOGY № 3 2015