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Further Testing of a Newly Developed Method for Low-Level Ambient Air Measurements of Acrolein

Presented at the National Environmental Monitoring Conference August 6-10, 2012

E. Grosjean, M. Hueppe, and S. Parmar

Atmospheric Analysis and Consulting, Inc.1534 Eastman Ave., Suite A Ventura, CA 93003  805-650-1642


AAC has recently developed a method for the analysis of Acrolein in ambient air based on NCASI Method 105.01, in which C18 cartridges are coated with O-Benzylhydroxylamine. When sampled, an Acrolein oxime derivative is formed on the cartridge, which is then extracted with Hexane and analyzed using Gas Chromatography with Nitrogen Phosphorous Detection. Preliminary studies done in our lab have shown promising results using this technique for the sampling and analysis of Acrolein in ambient air.

In this new work we will focus on applying our new method to lower- level ambient air measurements of Acrolein. Our goal is to be able to measure 10-25ppt of Acrolein in a 24-hour sample. We will optimize the GC-NPD for low levels of Acrolein using large volume injection and other refinements and will establish MDLs and PQLs at those levels. We will repeat some of the liquid spiking experiments and stability studies at lower Acrolein levels (0.1 and 1.0ppbv) relevant to ambient air. We will pull ambient air through the spiked cartridges for several hours in order to replicate actual sampling and to assess interferences from other co-pollutants such as CO,CO2, NOx and Ozone. We will repeat the bag recovery experiments at low levels relevant to ambient air (0.1-5ppbV) using a newly purchased Acrolein gas phase standard and spiking it into both purified lab air and ambient air. We will test the stability of the un-extracted and extracted samples at all concentrations for at least two weeks.

We will test what if any interference ozone has on the method and if needed test ozone removal devices to see if they remove any Acrolein while sampling.

Once we have finished the laboratory testing we will move on to ambient air measurements of Acrolein at AAC and possibly more polluted sites in the LA area. Our focus will be on low level 24-hour sampling used for air toxics or exposure assessments.

In order to access breakthrough we will collect some samples in series (upstream plus downstream) as well as collect collocated samples and those collected with and without ozone scrubbers (if needed).
Once validated, we would like to be able to compare our new method with either or both the DNPH and Summa Canister methods at one or more ambient sites over the course of several days.

Please contact AAC for a pdf copy of the full paper.