Yu-Lun Tseng1, Kwok-Wai Wong1, Chung-Shin Yuan This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.1,2, Chitsan Lin3 

1 Institute of Environmental Engineering, National Sun Yat-sen University, Kaohsiung 80424, Taiwan
2 Aeroaol Science Research Center, National Sun Yat-sen University, Kaohsiung 80424, Taiwan
3 Department of Marine Environmental Engineering, National Kaohsiung University of Science and Technology, Kaohsiung 81157, Taiwan

Received: February 26, 2022
Revised: April 24, 2022
Accepted: May 1, 2022

 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.220100  

Cite this article:

Tseng, Y.L., Wong, K.W., Yuan, C.S., Lin, C. (2022). Diurnal Variation of Chemical Characteristics and Source Identification of Fine Particles in the Kaohsiung Harbor. Aerosol Air Qual. Res. https://doi.org/10.4209/aaqr.220100


  • Nighttime PM2.5 in the Kaohsiung Harbor were mostly higher than daytime.
  • V and Ni are two significant indicators of ship emissions in the port PM2.5.
  • The V/Ni ratios of PM2.5 in the Kaohsiung Harbor were generally higher than 2.0.
  • Primary PM2.5 contributed from ship traffics accounted for 20.8% of PM2.5.


This study investigated the diurnal and monthly variation of fine particle (PM2.5) concentrations and its chemical characteristics and source identification in the Kaohsiung Harbor. Three sites located in the harbor areas were selected for simultaneously sampling 12-h PM2.5 in four months with consecutive seven days in each month. Water-soluble ions (WSIs), metallic elements, carbons, anhydrosugars, and organic acids in PM2.5 were analyzed to characterize their chemical fingerprints and monthly variation. Field sampling and chemical analysis of PM2.5 showed that significant diurnal and monthly variations of PM2.5’s mass concentration and chemical composition were observed in the Kaohsiung Harbor. Prevailing wind direction highly influences the mass concentrations and chemical characteristics of PM2.5 in the port areas. PM2.5 was dominated by WSIs with the abundance of secondary inorganic aerosols (SIAs). Crustal elements dominated the metallic content of PM2.5, but trace elements mainly originated from anthropogenic sources. The V/Ni ratios of PM2.5 in the Kaohsiung Harbor were generally higher than 2.0. Organic carbon (OC) was superior to elemental carbon (EC) in PM2.5 with the dominance of secondary OC (SOC). High concentration of levoglucosan (levo) was observed in spring due to nearby biomass burning. Additionally, high mass ratios of malonic and succinic acids (M/S) in PM2.5 indicated the potential formation of SOAs. Results obtained from chemical mass balanced (CMB) receptor modeling showed that the major sources of PM2.5 resolved in the Kaohsiung Harbor were mobile sources, ship emissions and oil-fired boilers, steel plants, secondary aerosols, sea salt spray, and fugitive dust. Primary PM2.5 emitted from ship traffics accounted for 20.8% of PM2.5.

Keywords: Fine particles, Harbor area, Diurnal variation, Chemical characteristics, Potential sources

Share this article with your colleagues 


Subscribe to our Newsletter 

Aerosol and Air Quality Research has published over 2,000 peer-reviewed articles. Enter your email address to receive latest updates and research articles to your inbox every second week.

Aerosol and Air Quality Research (AAQR) is an independently-run non-profit journal that promotes submissions of high-quality research and strives to be one of the leading aerosol and air quality open-access journals in the world. We use cookies on this website to personalize content to improve your user experience and analyze our traffic. By using this site you agree to its use of cookies.