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Project Status: complete

Report Published December 1995:

Title: Characterization of air quality data for the Southern California Air Quality Study.

Principal Investigator / Author(s): Pilinis, Chris

Contractor: AeroVironment

Contract Number: A932-079

Research Program Area: Atmospheric Processes

Topic Areas: Acid Deposition, Field Studies, Modeling, Monitoring


This report presents research based on data acquired during the Southern California Air Quality Study (SCAQS). SCAQS was an air pollution field measurement program that focused on development and improvement of our understanding of the most important factors affecting the production, transport, and deposition of acidic species in the South Coast Air Basin (SoCAB). In addition, the goal was to develop a comprehensive air quality and meteorology database that could be used to evaluate and improve elements of air quality simulation models for oxidants, fine and coarse particles, toxic air contaminants, and acidic species.

AeroVironment managed this project and received analytical contributions from Daniel Grosjean and Associates, Caltech and Clarkson University. Section 2 characterizes the SCAQS air quality data through graphical visualization and trajectory analyses. The conclusions made from the visual analysis include the following:

A good correlation between high SO2 concentrations and high SO4= levels was observed at Long Beach and Hawthorne, especially for relative humidities above 50%. However, at Rubidoux the relationship was not obvious, which means that phenomena other than chemistry and direct emissions could be responsible for the observed sulfate at the site: e.g., the transport from distant sources could be the major source of sulfates at that site.

Increased levels of SO4= corresponding to steady or decreased S02, or vice versa, were both observed in all of the episodes.


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

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