Polycyclic Aromatic Hydrocarbons (PAHs) are harmful, semi-volatile organic compounds which are generated due to the incomplete combustion of organic substances. PAHs are of concern as a pollutant because some of these compounds are carcinogenic and mutagenic even at low levels. Most of the PAHs are recalcitrant and persistent in the environment. The PAHs carcinogenic potential can be increased by the adsorption onto small size particles (< 1μm) which can easily get into the bronchioles and alveoli of the lungs. PAHs associated with sub-micron particles are mostly generated from high temperature sources like combustion chambers. In this current study, the presence of 16 priority PAHs (listed by United States Environmental Protection Agency) which are attached to the particulates emitted from the exhaust of the jet engine are evaluated. The engine was operated at different swirl numbers (S; the ratio of tangential air flow to axial air flow) to investigate the effect of this parameter on the effluent of combustion chamber. The samples were collected using two instruments simultaneously: a particle analyzer and a Micro-Orifice Uniform Deposited Impactor (MOUDI). Particle analyzer was used to count the number of particles in different sizes and MOUDI was used to collect particles with respect to their size as they were emitted from the exhaust. The MOUDI's aluminum substrates were weighed before and after the experiment in order to measure the mass of particles that were collected during the sampling period. The concentration of PAHs associated with the particles was measured by extracting the particles with dichloromethane followed by analysis via gas chromatography/mass spectrometry (GC/MS). In general, lower molecular weight PAHs emitted from the exhaust of combustion chamber are mostly in gas phase while PAHs of higher molecular weight are adsorbed onto particles. Preliminary results from GC/MS confirm the presence of higher molecular weight PAHs like Benzo[a]pyrene in most of the samples. Better recirculation between air and fuel in higher swirl numbers results in better combustion. In higher swirl numbers, the temperature of the combustion process increases which leads to a more complete combustion. Another result of higher swirl number is a longer residence time which allows the organic substances in the fuel to remain in the reaction longer and also leads to a more complete combustion. The preliminary results from particle analyzer show that the abundance ratio of smaller particles to larger particles increases at higher swirl numbers. For example, at swirl 86, the abundance ratio of 0.3 micron particles to 0.7 micron particles was 400 while at swirl 0, this ratio was 35. Smaller particles have higher specific surface area which allows for more PAH adsorption. The preliminary results show that operating the jet engine at higher swirl numbers can have positive or negative effects on particle-bound PAH emissions. Higher temperature and residence time as well as better mixture of fuel and air can reduce PAH emission while generating more small size particles can increase surface available for PAH adsorption and, as a result, increases PAH emission. In future experiments, particle-bound PAHs of different swirl numbers will be compared in order to find a swirl number range which generates fewer Particle-bound PAHs.
AGU Fall Meeting Abstracts
- Pub Date:
- December 2013
- 0305 ATMOSPHERIC COMPOSITION AND STRUCTURE Aerosols and particles;
- 0345 ATMOSPHERIC COMPOSITION AND STRUCTURE Pollution: urban and regional