skip to main content

Search for: All records

Creators/Authors contains: "Cui, Tianqu"

Note: When clicking on a Digital Object Identifier (DOI) number, you will be taken to an external site maintained by the publisher. Some full text articles may not yet be available without a charge during the embargo (administrative interval).
What is a DOI Number?

Some links on this page may take you to non-federal websites. Their policies may differ from this site.

  1. Free, publicly-accessible full text available December 6, 2023
  2. Acid-driven multiphase chemistry of isoprene epoxydiols (IEPOX) with inorganic sulfate aerosols contributes substantially to formation of secondary organic aerosol (SOA), which constitutes a large mass fraction of atmospheric fine particulate matter (PM2.5). However, atmospheric chemical sinks of freshly generated IEPOX-SOA particles remain unclear. We examined the role of heterogeneous oxidation of freshly-generated IEPOX-SOA particles by gas-phase hydroxyl radical (•OH) under dark conditions as one potential atmospheric sink. After 4 h of gas-phase •OH exposure (~3x108 molecules cm-3), chemical changes in smog chamber-generated IEPOX-SOA particles were assessed by hydrophilic interaction liquid chromatography coupled with electrospray ionization high-resolution quadrupole time-of-flight mass spectrometry (HILIC/ESI-HR-QTOFMS). Comparison of molecular-level compositional changes in IEPOX-SOA particles during aging with or without •OH revealed that decomposition of oligomers by heterogeneous •OH oxidation acts as a sink for •OH and maintains a reservoir of low-volatility compounds including monomeric sulfate esters and oligomer fragments. We propose tentative structures and formation mechanisms for previously uncharacterized SOA constituents in PM2.5. Our results suggest that this •OH-driven renewal of low-volatility products may extend atmospheric lifetimes of IEPOX-SOA particles by slowing production of low-molecular weight, high-volatility organic fragments, and likely contributes to large quantities of 2-methyltetrols and methyltetrol sulfates reported in PM2.5. 
    more » « less
  3. Blum, Joel (Ed.)
    Atmospheric oxidation of isoprene yields large quantities of highly water-soluble isoprene epoxydiols (IEPOX) that partition into fogs, clouds, and wet aerosols. In aqueous aerosols, the acid-catalyzed ring-opening of IEPOX followed by nucleophilic addition of inorganic sulfate or water forms organosulfates and 2-methyltetrols, respectively, contributing substantially to secondary organic aerosol (SOA). However, the fate of IEPOX in clouds, fogs, and evaporating hydrometeors is not well understood. Here we investigate the rates, product branching ratios, and stereochemistry of organosulfates from reactions of dilute IEPOX (5–10 mM) under a range of sulfate concentrations (0.3–50 mM) and pH values (1.83–3.38) in order to better understand the fate of IEPOX in clouds and fogs. From these aqueous dark reactions of β-IEPOX isomers (trans- and cis-2-methyl-2,3-epoxybutane-1,4-diols), which are the predominant IEPOX isomers, products were identified and quantified using hydrophilic interaction liquid chromatography coupled to an electrospray ionization high-resolution quadrupole time-of-flight mass spectrometer operated in negative ion mode (HILIC/(−)ESI-HR-QTOFMS). We found that the regiochemistry and stereochemistry were affected by pH, and the tertiary methyltetrol sulfate (C5H12O7S) was promoted by increasing solution acidity. Furthermore, the rate constants for the reaction of IEPOX under cloud-relevant conditions are up to 1 order of magnitude lower than reported in the literature for aerosol-relevant conditions due to a markedly different solution activities. Nevertheless, the contribution of cloud and fog water reactions to IEPOX SOA may be significant in cases of lower aqueous-phase pH (model estimate) or during droplet evaporation (not studied). 
    more » « less
  4. null (Ed.)
    Abstract. There are many fuels used for domestic purposes in east Africa, producing a significant atmospheric burden of the resulting aerosols, which includes biomass burning particles. However, the aerosol physicochemical properties are poorly understood. Here, the combustion of eucalyptus, acacia, and olive fuels was performed at 500 and 800 ∘C in a tube furnace, followed by immediate filter collection for fresh samples or introduction into a photochemical chamber to simulate atmospheric photochemical aging under the influence of anthropogenic emissions. The aerosol generated in the latter experiment was collected onto filters after 12 h of photochemical aging. 500 and 800 ∘C were selected to simulate smoldering and flaming combustion, respectively, and to cover a range of combustion conditions. Methanol extracts from Teflon filters were analyzed by ultra-performance liquid chromatography interfaced to both a diode array detector and an electrospray ionization high-resolution quadrupole time-of-flight mass spectrometer (UPLC/DAD-ESI-HR-QTOFMS) to determine the light absorption properties of biomass burning organic aerosol constituents chemically characterized at the molecular level. Few chemical or UV–visible (UV: ultraviolet) differences were apparent between samples for the fuels when combusted at 800 ∘C. Differences in single-scattering albedo (SSA) between fresh samples at this temperature were attributed to compounds not captured in this analysis, with eucalyptol being one suspected missing component. For fresh combustion at 500 ∘C, many species were present; lignin pyrolysis and distillation products are more prevalent in eucalyptus, while pyrolysis products of cellulose and at least one nitro-aromatic species were more prevalent in acacia. SSA trends areconsistent with this, particularly if the absorption of those chromophoresextends to the 500–570 nm region. Upon aging, both show that resorcinolor catechol was removed to the highest degree, and both aerosol types weredominated by loss of pyrolysis and distillation products, though they differed in the specific compounds being consumed by the photochemical aging process. 
    more » « less
  5. null (Ed.)
    Abstract Atmospheric ice nucleating particles (INPs) influence global climate by altering cloud formation, lifetime, and precipitation efficiency. The role of secondary organic aerosol (SOA) material as a source of INPs in the ambient atmosphere has not been well defined. Here, we demonstrate the potential for biogenic SOA to activate as depositional INPs in the upper troposphere by combining field measurements with laboratory experiments. Ambient INPs were measured in a remote mountaintop location at –46 °C and an ice supersaturation of 30% with concentrations ranging from 0.1 to 70 L –1 . Concentrations of depositional INPs were positively correlated with the mass fractions and loadings of isoprene-derived secondary organic aerosols. Compositional analysis of ice residuals showed that ambient particles with isoprene-derived SOA material can act as depositional ice nuclei. Laboratory experiments further demonstrated the ability of isoprene-derived SOA to nucleate ice under a range of atmospheric conditions. We further show that ambient concentrations of isoprene-derived SOA can be competitive with other INP sources. This demonstrates that isoprene and potentially other biogenically-derived SOA materials could influence cirrus formation and properties. 
    more » « less
  6. Methyltetrol sulfates are unique tracers for secondary organic aerosols (SOA) formed from acid-driven multiphase chemistry of isoprene-derived epoxydiols. 2-Methyltetrol sulfate diastereomers (2-MTSs) are the dominant isomers and single most-abundant SOA tracers in atmospheric fine particulate matter (PM2.5), but their atmospheric sinks remain unknown. We investigated the oxidative aging of authentic 2-MTS aerosols by gas-phase hydroxyl radicals (•OH) at a relative humidity of 61 ± 1%. The effective rate constant for this heterogeneous reaction was determined as 4.9 ± 0.6 × 10–13 cm3 molecules–1 s–1, corresponding to an atmospheric lifetime of 16 ± 2 days (assuming an •OH concentration of 1.5 × 106 molecules cm–3). Chemical changes to 2-MTSs were monitored by hydrophilic interaction liquid chromatography interfaced to electrospray ionization high-resolution quadrupole time-of-flight mass spectrometry (HILIC/ESI-HR-QTOFMS). Plausible reaction mechanisms are proposed for previously unknown OSs detected in atmospheric PM2.5 at mass-to-charge ratios (m/z) of 139 (C2H3O5S–), 155 (C2H3O6S–), 169 (C3H5O6S–), 171 (C3H7O6S–), 185 (C3H5O7S–), 199 (C4H7O7S–), 211 (C5H7O7S–), 213 (C5H9O7S–), 227 (C5H7O8S–), 229 (C5H9O8S–), and 231 (C5H11O8S–). Heterogeneous •OH oxidation of 2-MTSs redistributes the particulate sulfur speciation into more oxygenated/functionalized OSs, likely modifying the aerosol physicochemical properties of SOA containing 2-MTSs. 
    more » « less
  7. null (Ed.)
  8. null (Ed.)