Kwangyul Lee1, Indra Chandra1,3, Takafumi Seto1, Yayoi Inomata 1,2, Masahiko Hayashi4, Akinori Takami5, Ayako Yoshino5, Yoshio Otani1

Graduate School of Natural Science and Technology, Kanazawa University, Kanazawa, Ishikawa 920-1192, Japan
Institute of Nature and Environmental Technology, Kanazawa University, Kanazawa, Ishikawa 920-1192, Japan
Engineering Physics, School of Electrical Engineering, Telkom University, Bandung, Jawa Barat 40257, Indonesia
Faculty of Science, Fukuoka University, Jonan-ku, Fukuoka 814-0180, Japan
Center for Regional Environmental Research, National Institute for Environmental Studies, Tsukuba, Ibaraki 305-8506, Japan

Received: March 31, 2018
Revised: November 5, 2018
Accepted: December 7, 2018
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Cite this article:
Lee, K., Chandra, I., Seto, T., Inomata, Y., Hayashi, M., Takami, A., Yoshino, A. and Otani, Y. (2019). Aerial Observation of Atmospheric Nanoparticles on Fukue Island, Japan. Aerosol Air Qual. Res. 19: 981-994.


  • Vertical profile of atmospheric nanoparticle was observed at rural area in East Asia.
  • Increase of nanoparticle number concentration was found at 400 m.
  • Long range transport of air pollutants from Asian continent was observed.
  • Highly aged sulfates were observed during long range transport at April 15–16.


New particle formation (NPF) in the East Asian region is strongly influenced by photochemical processes during the long-range transport of air pollutants. Our previous measurements (Seto et al., 2013; Chandra et al., 2016) relating to the incomplete and weak NPF (onset diameter > 10 nm) on Fukue Island in Japan (downstream from the Asian continent) suggested nucleation in the upstream region. The vertical structure of atmospheric nanoparticle concentrations (particle size > 6 nm and altitude < 1.2 km) during NPF was observed using a Kite-Plane at Fukue Island. Three different event types were identified through aerial observations (different vertical profiles of nanoparticles), ground-based measurements (the initial detected diameter of nanoparticles, NPF starting time, and dominant chemical component in PM1), and air mass backward trajectory analysis. A stronger NPF event (Event I: > 35,000 particles cm–3) than in our previous measurements (from 2012 to 2016, ~20,000 particles cm–3) with a particle size as small as 5 nm, affected by the long-range transport of air pollutants under a high-pressure system, was detected. A sudden increase in particle number and SO2 concentrations with weak NPF caused by a change in the air mass origin (Event II: < 10,000 particles cm–3) as well as no NPF with aged sulfate particles during conditions with low particle number and SO2 concentrations (< 0.15 ppb) (Event III: < 2,000 particles cm–3) were also observed.

Keywords: New particle formation; Vertical structure; Trans-boundary transport; East Asia.


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