Project at a Glance

Title: Measurements of VOCs in the SoCAB: Chemical Characterization and Impacts on Potential Ozone and PM Formation

Principal Investigator / Author(s): Gilman, Jessica

Contractor: NOAA

Contract Number: 20RD002


Research Program Area: Atmospheric Processes

Topic Areas: Chemistry & Reactivity, Field Studies


Research Summary:

Volatile organic compounds (VOCs) are precursors for the formation of both secondary organic aerosols and ozone (O3), which cause adverse health effects, especially among sensitive populations. These secondary pollutants of VOCs contribute to the poor air quality in regions of California that fall short of meeting the National Ambient Air Quality Standards. Recent work indicates that non-mobile sources of VOCs are becoming more important as mobile source emissions are reduced. More specifically, volatile chemical products, which includes personal care products, cleaning agents, coatings, and adhesives, may comprise a large portion of the VOC emission inventory in the South Coast Air Basin. This project addresses the gap in understanding contemporary VOC composition by measuring a full suite of VOC species for five weeks in the summer of 2020 in Pasadena, California. Analysis of these measurements will be used to evaluate all major VOC sources, including VCPs, and the relative contributions of VOCs to potential photochemical O3 and PM2.5 formation. This scientific characterization and assessment is needed for the development of the most effective air pollution control strategy for all regions of California to reach NAAQS, and for the future development of effective State Implementation Plan.


For questions regarding this research project, including available data and progress status, contact: Research Division staff at (916) 445-0753

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