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Title: An intercomparison study of four different techniques for measuring the chemical composition of nanoparticles
Abstract. Currently, the complete chemical characterization of nanoparticles(< 100 nm) represents an analytical challenge, since these particlesare abundant in number but have negligible mass. Several methods forparticle-phase characterization have been recently developed to betterdetect and infer more accurately the sources and fates of sub-100 nmparticles, but a detailed comparison of different approaches is missing.Here we report on the chemical composition of secondary organic aerosol(SOA) nanoparticles from experimental studies of α-pinene ozonolysisat −50, −30, and −10 ∘C and intercompare the results measured by differenttechniques. The experiments were performed at the Cosmics Leaving OUtdoorDroplets (CLOUD) chamber at the European Organization for Nuclear Research(CERN). The chemical composition was measured simultaneously by fourdifferent techniques: (1) thermal desorption–differential mobility analyzer(TD–DMA) coupled to a NO3- chemical ionization–atmospheric-pressure-interface–time-of-flight (CI–APi–TOF) massspectrometer, (2) filter inlet for gases and aerosols (FIGAERO) coupled to anI− high-resolution time-of-flight chemical ionization mass spectrometer(HRToF-CIMS), (3) extractive electrospray Na+ ionizationtime-of-flight mass spectrometer (EESI-TOF), and (4) offline analysis offilters (FILTER) using ultra-high-performance liquid chromatography (UHPLC)and heated electrospray ionization (HESI) coupled to an Orbitraphigh-resolution mass spectrometer (HRMS). Intercomparison was performed bycontrasting the observed chemical composition as a function of oxidationstate and carbon number, by estimating the volatility and comparing thefraction of volatility classes, and by comparing the thermal desorptionbehavior (for the thermal desorption techniques: TD–DMA and FIGAERO) andperforming positive matrix factorization (PMF) analysis for the thermograms.We found that the methods generally agree on the most important compoundsthat are found in the nanoparticles. However, they do see different parts ofthe organic spectrum. We suggest potential explanations for thesedifferences: thermal decomposition, aging, sampling artifacts, etc. Weapplied PMF analysis and found insights of thermal decomposition in theTD–DMA and the FIGAERO.  more » « less
Award ID(s):
1801897 2132089
Author(s) / Creator(s):
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Date Published:
Journal Name:
Atmospheric Chemistry and Physics
Page Range / eLocation ID:
6613 to 6631
Medium: X
Sponsoring Org:
National Science Foundation
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