New study reveals Ulsan is exposed to yearlong toxic fine dust

phys.org | 7/16/2018 | Staff
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A new study, affiliated with South Korea's Ulsan National Institute of Science and Technology (UNIST) offers decisive proof that South Korea's Ulsan city is affected by toxic substances contained in fine dust particles, regardless of the season.

A new study, affiliated with UNIST offers decisive proof that South Korea's Ulsan city is affected by toxic substances contained in fine dust particles, regardless of the season.

Emission - Rates - Compounds - VOCs - Ulsan

In particular, the emission rates of volatile organic compounds (VOCs) in Ulsan was among the highest in South Korea. Hence, further investigation is urgently needed to manage fine dust in Ulsan region.

This study has been led by Professor Sung-Deuk Choi and his research team in the School of Urban and Environmental Engineering at UNIST. In the study, published in the May issue of Environmental Pollution, Professor Choi analyzed the concentrations of the atmospheric polycyclic aromatic hydrocarbons (PAHs) in Ulsan, using the air samples collected at UNIST.

Results - PAH - Concentrations - Summer - Concentration

The results showed that the PAH concentrations were higher even in summer when the concentration of fine dust reaches the lowest value. PAHs are among the most toxic chemical pollutants, contained in fine dust.

Professor Choi noted that South Korea's current analysis methods for measuring the concentrations of fine dust are seriously misguided. In fact, South Korea places more emphasis on the total concentration of fine dust in comprehending their adverse health effects. However, low concentration of fine dust could contain higher level of toxic substances, while high concentration could be based on relatively clean sand particles.

Dust - Mass - Risk - Health - Presence

"Even if the total fine dust mass is low, the risk to human health depends on the presence of certain toxic substances in it," says Professor Choi. "Therefore, further studies on the component analysis of fine dust are necessary and this time, we have dealt...
(Excerpt) Read more at: phys.org
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