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Dynamics of coarse and fine particles exposure in transport microenvironments

Kumar, Prashant, Rivas, Ioar, Singh, Anant Pratap, Ganesh, Vikas Julius, Ananya, Monirupa and Frey, H. Christopher (2018) Dynamics of coarse and fine particles exposure in transport microenvironments Climate and Atmospheric Science, 1, 11.

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A significant fraction of daily personal exposure to air pollutants occurs during commuting in transport microenvironments (TMEs). We carried out systematic mobile monitoring on a pre-defined route to assess personal exposure levels of particulate matter (PM) in four TMEs (bus, car, cycle and walk). Measurements were made during morning peak (MP), afternoon off-peak (OP) and evening peak (EP) hours in a typical UK town, Guildford. The objectives were to quantify the real-time exposure to fine and coarse particles, identify the factors influencing their spatiotemporal variation and estimate the respiratory deposition doses (RDD). The mean PM10 concentrations were 90±63, 23±9, 14±17, and 63±76 μg m-3 for bus, car, cycle and walk modes, respectively. The average ratios of PM2.5/PM10 were 0.32, 0.90, 0.67, and 0.36 for bus, car, cycle, and car journeys, respectively. The mean concentrations of coarse particles (PM2.5-10) followed the trend: bus >walk >cycle >car. In contrast, mean concentrations of submicron (PM1) and fine particles (PM2.5) were usually high in the car while lowest for cyclists. RDD depend on the physical activity, particle size distribution and thus deposited fraction are not always proportional to the ambient concentration. RDD for coarse particles was largest for the walk mode (56±14 μg h-1), followed by buses (31±2 μg h-1), cycle (12±3 μg h-1) and cars (1.2±0.3 μg h-1). The corresponding RDD of fine particles were comparable for both the walk (5.5±0.3 μg h-1) and cycle (5.1±1.2 μg h-1), followed by bus (4.1±0.7 μg h-1) and car (2.0±0.2 μg h-1). Car mode experienced both the least concentrations and RDD for coarse particles. It also had the lowest RDD for fine particles despite high concentrations. Physical activity of car commuters is modest compared with walking and cycling, which makes the rank ordering of RDD different than those of exposure concentrations. Hence the management of commuting exposures should consider potential dose and not just exposure concentration for curtailing adverse health effects related to commuting. RDD for pedestrian and cycle modes were not the lowest among the measured modes but opportunities such an increased distance between the heavily trafficked roadways and pedestrians/cyclists should be considered in urban planning to reduce potential doses.

Item Type: Article
Divisions : Faculty of Engineering and Physical Sciences > Civil and Environmental Engineering
Authors :
Rivas, Ioar
Singh, Anant Pratap
Ganesh, Vikas Julius
Ananya, Monirupa
Frey, H. Christopher
Date : 3 June 2018
DOI : 10.1038/s41612-018-0023-y
Copyright Disclaimer : Open Access This article is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution 4.0 International License, which permits use, sharing, adaptation, distribution and reproduction in any medium or format, as long as you give appropriate credit to the original author(s) and the source, provide a link to the Creative Commons license, and indicate if changes were made. The images or other third party material in this article are included in the article’s Creative Commons license, unless indicated otherwise in a credit line to the material. If material is not included in the article’s Creative Commons license and your intended use is not permitted by statutory regulation or exceeds the permitted use, you will need to obtain permission directly from the copyright holder. To view a copy of this license, visit
Uncontrolled Keywords : Personal exposure; Air pollution; Transport modes; Particulate matter; Respiratory deposition doses; City environments
Depositing User : Melanie Hughes
Date Deposited : 09 Feb 2018 11:46
Last Modified : 16 Jan 2019 19:07

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