14 Nov 2022
14 Nov 2022
Status: this preprint is open for discussion.

Real-time measurements of NMVOCs in the central IGB, Lucknow, India: Source characterization and their role in O3 and SOA formation

Vaishali Jain1, Sachchida N. Tripathi1,2, Nidhi Tripathi3, Mansi Gupta3, Lokesh K. Sahu3, Vishnu Murari1, Sreenivas Gaddamidi1, Ashutosh K. Shukla1, and Andre S. H. Prevot4 Vaishali Jain et al.
  • 1Department of Civil Engineering, Indian Institute of Technology Kanpur, Kanpur, India
  • 2Centre for Environmental Science and Engineering, Indian Institute of Technology Kanpur, Kanpur, India
  • 3Space and Atmospheric Sciences Division, Physical Research Laboratory, Ahmedabad, India
  • 4Laboratory of Atmospheric Chemistry, Paul Scherrer Institute, Switzerland

Abstract. Lucknow is the capital of India’s largest state, Uttar Pradesh, one of South Asia’s most polluted urban cities. Tropospheric photochemistry relies on non-methane volatile organic compounds (NMVOCs), which are ozone and secondary organic aerosol precursors. Using the proton-transfer reaction time of flight mass spectrometer (PTR-ToF-MS) at an urban background site in Lucknow, the chemical characterisation of NMVOCs was performed in real-time from Dec-2020–May 2021. The campaign mean concentrations of the NMVOCs were 125.5 ±37.5 ppbv. The average concentrations of NMVOCs are relatively high during winter. An advanced multi-linear engine (ME-2) model was used to perform the NMVOCs source apportionment using positive matrix factorisation (PMF). It resolves the five main sources contributing to these organic compounds in the atmosphere. They include traffic, two solid fuel combustion factors, secondary volatile organic compounds and volatile chemical products. Biomass burning contributes most to the NMVOCs and SOA formation, while interestingly, traffic sources most influence ozone formation. Significant differences in the composition of the two solid fuel combustion indicate the influence of local emissions and transport of regional pollution to the city. The high temperature during summer leads to more volatilisation of oxygenated VOCs.

Vaishali Jain et al.

Status: open (until 26 Dec 2022)

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Vaishali Jain et al.


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Short summary
This research chemically characterises 173 different NMVOCs (non-methane volatile organic compounds) measured in real-time for three seasons in the urban city of the central Indo-Gangetic Basin of India, Lucknow. Receptor modelling is used to analyze probable sources of NMVOCs and their crucial role in forming ozone and secondary organic aerosols. It is observed that vehicular emissions and solid fuel combustion are the most contributing towards the emission of primary and secondary NMVOCs.