MONITORING AND LABORATORY DIVISION
STANDARD OPERATING PROCEDURE

S.O.P. No. MLD 062 - Procedure for Filter and Canister Preparation for PM2.5 Speciation Samples

SCOPE

In 1997, the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency created new federal air quality standards for PM2.5 and ozone, and proposed new requirements to reduce the regional haze that impairs visibility.  The PM2.5 standards complement existing federal and state standards that target the full range of inhalable particulate matter (PM10).  Efforts to characterize PM2.5 and comply with the federal standards will further progress toward California's own PM10 standards. The goal of the PM2.5 monitoring program is to provide ambient data that support the nation's air quality programs.  These data include mass measurements and chemically resolved, or speciated, data. Mass measurements are used principally for comparison to the PM2.5 National Ambient Air Quality Standards (NAAQS).  These comparisons identify areas that do or do not meet the PM2.5 NAAQS, thereby allowing areas to be designated as attainment or nonattainment.  Speciated data support the development of emission mitigation strategies intended to reduce ambient PM2.5 levels.  The data are used to evaluate emissions inventory and air quality models, analyze source attribution, and track the success of emission control programs.

SUMMARY OF METHOD

Method MLD062 describes the preparation of the sampling canisters used for the collection of PM2.5 speciation samples, shipment to the field collection sites, receipt and disassembly, and login / distribution of samples for analysis within the laboratory.  Each sample shipment consists of three canisters, one containing a preweighed teflon filter for mass and metals analysis, one containing a nylon filter for ion analysis, and one containing a quartz filter for organic carbon / elemental carbon (OC/EC) analysis.