Experimental and model estimates of the contributions from biogenic monoterpenes and sesquiterpenes to secondary organic aerosol in the southeastern United States Journal Article uri icon



  • Abstract. Atmospheric organic aerosol (OA) has important impacts on; climate and human health but its sources remain poorly understood. Biogenic; monoterpenes and sesquiterpenes are important precursors of secondary organic; aerosol (SOA), but the amounts and pathways of SOA generation from these; precursors are not well constrained by observations. We propose that the; less-oxidized oxygenated organic aerosol (LO-OOA) factor resolved from; positive matrix factorization (PMF) analysis on aerosol mass spectrometry; (AMS) data can be used as a surrogate for fresh SOA from monoterpenes and; sesquiterpenes in the southeastern US. This hypothesis is supported by; multiple lines of evidence, including lab-in-the-field perturbation; experiments, extensive ambient ground-level measurements, and; state-of-the-art modeling. We performed lab-in-the-field experiments in; which the ambient air is perturbed by the injection of selected monoterpenes; and sesquiterpenes, and the subsequent SOA formation is investigated. PMF analysis; on the perturbation experiments provides an objective link between LO-OOA and; fresh SOA from monoterpenes and sesquiterpenes as well as insights into the; sources of other OA factors. Further, we use an upgraded atmospheric model; and show that modeled SOA concentrations from monoterpenes and sesquiterpenes; could reproduce both the magnitude and diurnal variation of LO-OOA at; multiple sites in the southeastern US, building confidence in our; hypothesis. We estimate the annual average concentration of SOA from; monoterpenes and sesquiterpenes in the southeastern US to be roughly 2 µg m−3.;

publication date

  • August 31, 2018

Date in CU Experts

  • June 27, 2021 6:00 AM

Full Author List

  • Xu L; Pye HOT; He J; Chen Y; Murphy BN; Ng NL

author count

  • 6

Other Profiles

Electronic International Standard Serial Number (EISSN)

  • 1680-7324

Additional Document Info

start page

  • 12613

end page

  • 12637


  • 18


  • 17