Apportionment of the sources of high fine particulate matter concentration events in a developing aerotropolis in Taoyuan, Taiwan

Ming Tung Chuang, Yu Chieh Chen, Chung Te Lee, Chung Hao Cheng, Yu Jen Tsai, Shih Yu Chang, Zhen Sen Su

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32 Scopus citations


To investigate the characteristics and contributions of the sources of fine particulate matter with a size of up to 2.5 μm (PM2.5) during the period when pollution events could easily occur in Taoyuan aerotropolis, Taiwan, this study conducted sampling at three-day intervals from September 2014 to January 2015. Based on the mass concentration of PM2.5, the sampling days were classified into high PM2.5 concentration event days (PM2.5>35 μg m-3) and non-event days (PM2.5<35 μg m-3). In addition, the chemical species, including water-soluble inorganic ions, carbonaceous components, and metal elements, were analyzed. The sources of pollution and their contributions were estimated using the positive matrix factorization (PMF) model. Furthermore, the effect of the weather type on the measurement results was also explored based on wind field conditions. The mass fractions of Cl- and NO3- increased when a high PM2.5 concentration event occurred, and they were also higher under local emitted conditions than under long range transported conditions, indicating that secondary nitrate aerosols were the major increasing local species that caused high PM2.5 concentration events. Seven sources of pollution could be distinguished using the PMF model on the basis of the characteristics of the species. Industrial emissions, coal combustion/urban waste incineration, and local emissions from diesel/gasoline vehicles were the main sources that contributed to pollution on high PM2.5 concentration event days. In order to reduction of high PM2.5 concentration events, the control of diesel and gasoline vehicle emission is important and should be given priority.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)273-281
Number of pages9
JournalEnvironmental Pollution
StatePublished - 1 Jul 2016


  • Chemical composition
  • Mass fraction
  • PM
  • Positive matrix factorization
  • Source apportionment


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