Toxic Trace and Earth Crustal Elements of Ambient PM2.5 Using CCT-ICP-MS in an Urban Area of Korea

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    Collision cell technology-inductively coupled plasma-mass spectrometry (CCT-ICP-MS) was used to measure the concentrations of approximately 19 elements associated with airborne PM2.5 samples that were collected from a roadside sampling station in Daejeon, Korea. Standard reference material (SRM 2783, air particulate on filter media) of the National Institute of Standards and Technology was used for the quality assurance of CCT-ICP-MS. The elemental concentrations were compared statistically with the certified (or recommended) values. The patterns of distribution were clearly distinguished between elements with their concentrations ranging over four orders of magnitude. If compared in terms of enrichment factors, it was found that toxic trace elements (e.g., Sb, Se, Cd, As, Zn, Pb, and Cu) of anthropogenic origin are much more enriched in PM2.5 samples of the study site. To the contrary, the results of the correlation analysis showed that PM2.5 concentrations can exhibit more enhanced correlations with the elements (e.g., Fe, K, Si, and Ti) arising from earth’s crust. The findings of strong correlations between PM2.5 and the elements of crustal origin may be directly comparable with the dominant role of those species by constituting a major fraction of even PM2.5 as well as PM10 at the roadside area.


    CCT-ICP-MS , Earth crustal elements , PM2.5 , Toxic trace elements , Urban area