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A Comparative Analysis of Aerosol Microphysical, Optical and Radiative Properties during the Spring Festival Holiday over Beijing and Surrounding Regions

Category: Aerosol Source, Formation, Transport, Deposition, and its Chemical and Physical Processes

Volume: 18 | Issue: 7 | Pages: 1774-1787
DOI: 10.4209/aaqr.2017.10.0396

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Yu Zheng1,2, Huizheng Che 2, Xiangao Xia3, Yaqiang Wang2, Hujia Zhao2, Hong Wang2, Victor Estell├ęs4, Linchang An5, Ke Gui2, Tianze Sun2, Boshi Kang6, Deguang Zhang7, Chunyang Zhao8, Chong Liu9, Zhuozhi Shu1, Yongliang Sun1, Bingbo Huang1, Rongfan Chai1, Tianliang Zhao1, Xiaoye Zhang2

  • 1 Key Laboratory of Meteorological Disaster, Ministry of Education/Joint International Research Laboratory of Climate and Environment Change/Collaborative Innovation Center on Forecast and Evaluation of Meteorological Disasters/Key Laboratory for Aerosol-Cloud-Precipitation of China Meteorological Administration, Nanjing University of Information Science and Technology, Nanjing 210044, China
  • 2 State Key Laboratory of Severe Weather (LASW) and Institute of Atmospheric Composition, Chinese Academy of Meteorological Sciences, CMA, Beijing 100081, China
  • 3 Laboratory for Middle Atmosphere and Global Environment Observation (LAGEO), Institute of Atmospheric Physics, Chinese Academy of Sciences, Beijing 100029, China
  • 4 Departament de Física de la Terra i Termodinàmica, Universitat de València, 46100 Burjassot Valencia, Spain
  • 5 National Meteorological Center, CMA, Beijing 100081, China
  • 6 Meteorological Equipment Support Center, Liaoning Meteorological Bureau, Shenyang 110016, China
  • 7 Inner Mongolia Institute of Meteorology Sciences, Inner Mongolia Meteorological Bureau, Hohhot 010051, China
  • 8 Meteorological Observatory, Shenzhen Meteorological Bureau, Shenzhen 518040, China
  • 9 School of Atmospheric Sciences, Nanjing University, Nanjing 210093, China


High aerosol concentrations and lower PBLH contributed to the pollution episode.
Increasing trends of AOD and α were found during the holiday period.
High volumes of fine-mode particles indicated anthropogenic activities.
Organic aerosols and black carbon caused by fireworks may lead to high AAOD.


Using ground-based data, meteorological observations, and atmospheric environmental monitoring data, a comparative analysis of the microphysical and optical properties, and radiative forcing of aerosols was conducted between three stations in different developed environments during a severe air pollution episode during the Spring Festival over Beijing. During the most polluted period, the daily peak values of the aerosol optical depth were ~1.62, ~1.73, and ~0.74, which were about 2.6, 2.9, and 2.1 times higher than the background levels at the CAMS, Xianghe, and Shangdianzi sites, respectively. The daily peak values of the single scattering albedo were ~0.95, ~0.96, and ~0.87. The volume of fine-mode particles varied from 0.04 to 0.21 µm3 µm–2, 0.06 to 0.17 µm3 µm–2, and 0.01 to 0.10 µm3 µm–2, which were about 0.3 to 5.8, 1.1 to 4.7, and 1.2 to 8.9 times greater than the background values, respectively. The daily absorption aerosol optical depth was ~0.01 to ~0.13 at CAMS, ~0.03 to ~0.14 at Xianghe, and ~0.01 to ~0.09 at Shangdianzi, and the absorption Ångström exponents reflected a significant increase in organic aerosols over CAMS and Xianghe and in black carbon over Shangdianzi. Aerosol radiative forcing at the bottom of the atmosphere varied from –20 to –130, –40 to –150, and –10 to –110 W m–2 for the whole holiday period, indicating the cooling effect. The potential source contribution function and concentration-weighted trajectory analysis showed that Beijing, the southern parts of Hebei and Shanxi, and the central northern part of Shandong contributed greatly to the pollution.


Air pollution Aerosol optical properties Radiative forcing Spring Festival holiday Beijing

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