Tareq Hussein This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.1,2, Xinyang Li2, Qusay Al-Dulaimi2, Shatha Daour1, Nahid Atashi2,3, Mar Viana4, Andres Alastuey4, Larisa Sogacheva5, Sharif Arar6, Afnan Al-Hunaiti6, Tuukka Petäjä2

1 Department of Physics, The University of Jordan, Amman 11942, Jordan
2 Institute for Atmospheric and Earth System Research (INAR), University of Helsinki, Helsinki FI-00014, Finland
3 Faculty of Geographical science and Planning, University of Isfahan, Isfahan 8174673441, Iran
4 Institute of Environmental Assessment and Water Research (IDAEA-CSIC), Barcelona 08034, Spain
5 Climate Change Programme, Finnish Meteorological Institute, Helsinki, Finland
6 Department of Chemistry, The University of Jordan, Amman 11942, Jordan


Received: May 4, 2020
Revised: July 23, 2020
Accepted: September 14, 2020

 Copyright The Author(s). This is an open access article distributed under the terms of the Creative Commons Attribution License (CC BY 4.0), which permits unrestricted use, distribution, and reproduction in any medium, provided the original author and source are cited.

Download Citation: ||https://doi.org/10.4209/aaqr.2020.05.0195  

Cite this article:

Hussein, T., Li, X., Al-Dulaimi, Q., Daour, S., Atashi, N., Viana, M., Alastuey, A., Sogacheva, L,. Arar, S., Al-Hunaiti, A. and Petäjä, T. (2020). Particulate Matter Concentrations in a Middle Eastern City – An Insight to Sand and Dust Storm Episodes. Aerosol Air Qual. Res. 20: 2780–2792. https://doi.org/10.4209/aaqr.2020.05.0195


  • Annual PM10 was 64 ± 39 µg m3.
  • PM2.5/PM10 ratio was 0.8 ± 0.2.
  • SDS episodes were tracked back to North Africa, Arabian Peninsula, and Levant.
  • 24-hour PM10 during SDS episodes was 108–188 µg m–3.


In this study, the particulate matter mass (PM10 and PM2.5) concentrations we measured during May 2018–March 2019 in an urban atmosphere of Amman, Jordan. The results showed that the annual mean PM10 concentration was 64 ± 39 µg m–3 and the PM2.5/PM10 ratio was 0.8 ± 0.2. According to the Jordanian Air Quality standards (JS-1140/2006), the observed PM10 annual mean value was below the limit value but that of the PM2.5 was three times higher than the corresponding limit value. However, both exceeded the World Health Organization (WHO) air quality guideline values. In a larger perspective, the annual mean PM10 concentrations in Jordan were lower than what was reported in other cities in the Middle East but were higher when compared to other Mediterranean cities. During the measurement period, Jordan was affected by Sand and Dust Storm (SDS) episodes on 14 days. The source origins of these dust outbreaks were traced back to North Africa, the Arabian Peninsula, and the Levant. The 24-hour PM10 concentrations during these SDS episodes ranged between 108 and 188 µg m–3, which was about 3–6 times higher than the mean values during clean conditions (~33 µg m–3).

Keywords: Urban air quality; Particulate matter; Dust particles; Back-trajectory.

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