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Organic compounds indicators of natural and anthropic emissions

Grant number: 06/51476-1
Support Opportunities:Regular Research Grants
Duration: July 01, 2006 - December 31, 2008
Field of knowledge:Physical Sciences and Mathematics - Chemistry
Principal Investigator:Pérola de Castro Vasconcellos
Grantee:Pérola de Castro Vasconcellos
Host Institution: Instituto de Química (IQ). Universidade de São Paulo (USP). São Paulo , SP, Brazil


In the tropics the major source of aerosols is biomass burning. In Brazil, sugar cane production expanded mainly for ethanol production used as automotive fuel. The leaves are burnt and polycyclic aromatic hydrocarbons (PAH) are formed. PAH characterization has been done in three urban áreas with sugarcane burning influences and one mega city area to assess the air quality and determine human exposure levels to these compounds. Studies have been done in the burning season (August 2002 and July 2003) and in the wet season (March 2003). N-aIkanes, PAH, and nitro-PAH associated with atmospheric particulate matter were identified and quantified (n=82 samples) in ambient air and in direct emissions samples. Trace gases were monitored in the mega city site. Air mass back trajectories have been calculated to identify the origin of the smoke. After particulate extraction in Soxhlet and fractions separation by HPLC, the samples were analyzed by GC/MS. Fractions and total extracts from three samples were tested in the Salmonella/microsome assay with TA98 and YG104 strains, and nitro-PAH seemed to be responsible to the mutagenicity detected in alI samples analyzed. The results show the highest total PAH (43 ng/m3) and PM1O levels (91 μg/m3) were found in ARA-2002. This site receives strong contributions of sugarcane burning. 2-nitrofluoranthene and 2- nitropyrene, photochemical mutagenic compounds were found mostly in urban site (61 pg/m3 and 15 pg/m3). Considering all sites 68% of the ambient samples collected (n=40) were above WHO standards for PM1O (50 ug/m3) and for TSP (120 ug/m3). Among the PAH fluoranthene (346 μg/m3), pyrene (333 μg/m3) and benzo(a)anthracene (251 ug/m3) presented the highest levels in direct emissions. (AU)

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Scientific publications
(References retrieved automatically from Web of Science and SciELO through information on FAPESP grants and their corresponding numbers as mentioned in the publications by the authors)
VASCONCELLOS, PEROLA C.; SOUZA, DAVI Z.; AVILA, SIMONE G.; ARAUJO, MARIA P.; NAOTO, EDSON; NASCIMENTO, KATIA H.; CAVALCANTE, FERNANDO S.; DOS SANTOS, MARINA; SMICHOWSKI, PATRICIA; BEHRENTZ, EDUARDO. Comparative study of the atmospheric chemical composition of three South American cities. Atmospheric Environment, v. 45, n. 32, p. 5770-5777, . (06/51476-1)
SOUZA, DAVI Z.; VASCONCELLOS, PEROLA C.; LEE, HELENA; AURELA, MINNA; SAARNIO, KARRI; TEINILAE, KIMMO; HILLAMO, RISTO. Composition of PM2.5 and PM10 Collected at Urban Sites in Brazil. Aerosol and Air Quality Research, v. 14, n. 1, p. 168-176, . (06/51476-1)
MOTTA, ROSANGELA; VASCONCELLOS, PEROLA C.; BERNUCCI, LIEDI; AVILA, SIMONE G.; CORNETTI, TALITA. Comparison of the n-alkanes and polycyclic aromatic hydrocarbons concentrations in the atmosphere during the preparation of warm and hot mixtures asphalt for pavements. Journal of the Brazilian Chemical Society, v. 23, n. 8, p. 1501-1505, . (06/51476-1)

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