Seasonal variation of ionic species in fine particles at Qingdao, China

Min Hu, Ling Yan He, Yuan Hang Zhang, Min Wang, Yong Pyo Kim, K. C. Moon

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

160 Scopus citations


Totally nine measurement campaigns for ambient particles and SO2 have been conducted during the period of 1997-2000 in Qingdao in order to understand the characteristics of the particulate matter in coastal areas of China. The mass fractions of PM2.5, PM2.5-10 and PM>10 in TSP are 49%, 25% and 26%, respectively. The size distribution of particles mass concentrations in Qingdao shows bi-modal distribution. Mass fraction percentages of water-soluble ions in PM2.5, PM2.5-10 and PM>10 decreased from 62% to 35% and 21%. In fine particles, sulfate, nitrate and ammonium, secondary formed compounds, are major components, totally accounting for 50% of PM2.5 mass concentration. The ratios of sulfate, chloride, ammonium and potassium in PM2.5 for heating versus non-heating periods are 1.34, 1.80, 1.56 and 1.44, respectively. The ratio of nitrate is 3.02 and this high ratio could be caused by reduced volatilization at lower temperature. Sulfate concentrations are higher than nitrate in PM2.5. The chemical forms of sulfate and nitrate are probably (NH4)2SO4 and NH4NO3 and chloride depletion was observed. Backward trajectory analysis reflected possible influence of air pollutant transport to Qingdao local aerosol pollution.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)5853-5859
Number of pages7
JournalAtmospheric Environment
Issue number38
StatePublished - Dec 2002

Bibliographical note

Funding Information:
The authors would like to appreciate Prof. J. Slanina, the Netherlands Energy Research Foundation, Guest Professor of Peking University, and the anonymous reviewers for comments and suggestions that improved this manuscript. We are indebted to China National Nature Science Foundation (29877002, 29837190), and Korea Institute of Science and Technology (KIST) for financial supports. We would also like to thank Qingdao Environmental Protection Bureau, China, who provided the relative information and sampling sites.


  • Fine particles
  • Mass size distribution
  • Seasonal variation
  • Sulfur dioxide
  • Water-soluble ions


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