Ground and Airborne Aerosol Composition Measurements of California Coastal Chaparral Smoke Emissions
Friday, 19 December 2014
Wildfire smoke has large local to global pollution impacts. We present aerosol composition data from two fires in southern California. We measured organic aerosol (OA) of nascent and aged (4 h) smoke from the Williams Fire during the 2009 airborne San Luis Obispo Biomass Burning Campaign (SLOBB). The net ΔOA/ΔCO2 decreased by ~20%; however, positive matrix factorization (PMF) analysis of the organic mass spectra supports two factors that enable the OA emissions to be separated into fresh and oxidized OA. The Δfresh BBOA/ΔCO2 had a steeper decline than the ΔOA/ΔCO2 consistent with outgassing of semi-voltile organic compounds (SVOCs) due to dilution, whereas the Δoxidized BBOA/ΔCO2 increased from its initial value, consist with formation of secondary organic aerosol (SOA). We compare these fresh and oxidized mass spectral signatures, along with chaparral smoke samples measured in the Missoula Fire Lab, to ground-based aerosol measurements made during the Station Fire that occurred one month earlier than the Williams Fire during the Pasadena Aerosol Characterization Observatory Campaign (PACO). Night and daytime aerosol smoke emissions were sampled for one week during the Station Fire. Daytime organic aerosol smoke emissions exhibited larger variability both in mass concentration and composition than nighttime smoke emissions. Both levoglucosan and potassium, known biomass burning tracers, were measured and had distinct time series, supporting diversity in the flaming vs. smoldering initial burning conditions. Similar to the Williams Fire, PMF of the Station Fire mass spectra also reveal two biomass burning factors, one that is less oxidized and correlates strongly with levoglucosan measurements and one that is heavily oxidized and correlates in time with the potassium signal. These two campaigns have allowed us to probe fresh and oxidized smoke in both night and daytime conditions, and PMF results have revealed that at least two emission factors are useful to describe OA smoke emissions.