Correlation of black carbon aerosol and carbon monoxide in the high-altitude environment of Mt. Huang in Eastern China
1Research Institute for Global Change, Japan Agency for Marine-Earth Science and Technology, Japan
2State Key Laboratory of Atmospheric Boundary Layer Physics and Atmospheric Chemistry, Institute of Atmospheric Physics, Chinese Academy of Sciences, Beijing, China
3Institutes of Atmospheric Physics, Chinese Academy of Sciences, Beijing, China
4School of Social and Environmental Development, National Institute of Development Administration, Bangkok, Thailand
5Acid Depositions and Oxidant Research Center, Asia Center for Air Pollution Research, Japan
Abstract. Understanding the relationship between black carbon (BC) and carbon monoxide (CO) will help improve BC emission inventories and the evaluation of global/regional climate forcing effects. In the present work, the BC (PM1) mass concentration and CO mixing ratio were continuously measured at a high-altitude background station on the summit of Mt. Huang (30.16° N, 118.26° E, 1840 m a.s.l.). Annual mean BC mass concentration was 1004.5 ± 895.5 ng m−3 with maxima in spring and autumn, and annual mean CO mixing ratio was 424.1 ± 159.2 ppbv. A large increase of CO was observed in the cold season, implying the contribution from the large-scale domestic coal/biofuel combustion for heating. The BC-CO relationship was found to show different seasonal features but strong positive correlation (R>0.8). In Mt. Huang area, the ΔBC/ΔCO ratio showed unimodal diurnal variations and had a maximum during the day (09:00–17:00 LST) and minimum at night (21:00–04:00 LST) in all seasons, indicating the impact of planetary boundary layer and the intrusion of clean air masses from the high troposphere. Back trajectory cluster analysis showed that the ΔBC/ΔCO ratio of plumes from the Eastern China (Jiangsu, Zhejiang provinces and Shanghai) was 8.8 ± 0.9 ng m−3 ppbv−1. Transportation and industry were deemed as controlling factors of the BC-CO relationship in this region. The ΔBC/ΔCO ratios for air masses from Northern China (Anhui, Henan, Shanxi and Shandong provinces) and southern China (Jiangxi, Fujian and Hunan provinces) were quite similar with mean values of 6.5 ± 0.4 and 6.5 ± 0.2 ng m−3 ppbv−1 respectively. The case studies combined with satellite observations demonstrated that the ΔBC/ΔCO ratio for biomass burning (BB) plumes were 10.3 ± 0.3 and 11.6 ± 0.5ng m−3 ppbv−1, significantly higher than those during non-BB impacted periods. The loss of BC during transport was also investigated on the basis of the ΔBC/ΔCO-RH (relative humidity) relationship along air mass pathways. The results showed that BC particles from Eastern China area was much more easily removed from atmosphere than other inland regions due to the higher RH along transport pathway, implying the importance of chemical compositions and mixing states on BC residence time in the atmosphere.