Vol. 166

Front:[PDF file] Back:[PDF file]
Latest Volume
All Volumes
All Issues

Filter-Free Light Absorption Measurement of Volcanic Ashes and Ambient Particulate Matter Using Multi-Wavelength Photoacoustic Spectroscopy

By Gaoxuan Wang, Pierre Kulinski, Patrice Hubert, Alexandre Deguine, Denis Petitprez, Suzanne Crumeyrolle, Eric Fertein, Karine Deboudt, Pascal Flament, Markus W. Sigrist, Hongming Yi, and Wei Dong Chen
Progress In Electromagnetics Research, Vol. 166, 59-74, 2019


Accurate measurement of atmospheric particulate matter (PM) absorption coefficient is highly required for study of earth climate change and for monitoring of air quality. In addition, multi-wavelength measurements of PM absorption can provide information on the PM chemical composition (black carbon or brown carbon). A multi-wavelengths photoacoustic (MW-PA) spectrophone operating at 444, 532 and 660 nm was developed and deployed for filter-free characterization of wavelength-dependent optical properties of PM mass absorption coefficient (MAC) and absorption Ångström coefficient (AAC). It is worth noting that to date no any AAC of volcanic ashes determined by filter-free measurement have been reported. The developed MW-PA spectrophone was deployed to an intensive field campaign measurement of environmental PM in Grenoble (France). Side-by-side inter-comparison measurements of ambient PM showed a good correlation between the developed MW-PA spectrophone and a reference instrument aethalometer (Magee scientific, AE33).


Gaoxuan Wang, Pierre Kulinski, Patrice Hubert, Alexandre Deguine, Denis Petitprez, Suzanne Crumeyrolle, Eric Fertein, Karine Deboudt, Pascal Flament, Markus W. Sigrist, Hongming Yi, and Wei Dong Chen, "Filter-Free Light Absorption Measurement of Volcanic Ashes and Ambient Particulate Matter Using Multi-Wavelength Photoacoustic Spectroscopy," Progress In Electromagnetics Research, Vol. 166, 59-74, 2019.


    1. Myhre, G., D. Shindell, F. M. Br´eon, W. Collins, J. Fuglestvedt, J. Huang, D. Koch, J. F. Lamarque, D. Lee, B. Mendoza, T. Nakajima, A. Robock, G. Stephens, T. Takemura, and H. Zhang, "Anthropogenic and natural radiative forcing," Climate Change 2013: The Physical Science Basis. Contribution of Working Group I to the Fifth Assessment Report of the Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change, 678-698, Cambridge University Press, Cambridge, 2013.

    2. Kinne, S., "An AeroCom initial assessment — Optical properties in aerosol component modules of global models," Atmos. Chem. Phys., Vol. 6, 1815-1834, 2006.

    3. Loeb, N. G. and W. Su, "Direct aerosol radiative forcing uncertainty based on a radiative perturbation analysis," J. Climate, Vol. 23, 5288-5293, 2010.

    4. Ajtai, T., A. Filep, M. Schnaiter, Linke, M. Vragel, Z. Bozoki, G. Szaboa, and T. Leisner, "A novel multi-wavelength photoacoustic spectrometer for the measurement of the UV-vis-NIR spectral absorption coefficient of atmospheric aerosols," J. Aerosol. Sci., Vol. 41, 1020-1029, 2010.

    5. Moosmuller, H., R. K. Chakrabarty, and W. P. Arnott, "Aerosol light absorption and its measurement: A review," J. Quant. Spectrosc. Rad. Transfer, Vol. 110, 844-878, 2009.

    6. Lack, D. A., H. Moosm¨uller, G. R. McMeeking, R. K. Chakrabarty, and D. Baumgardner, "Characterizing elemental, equivalent black, and refractory black carbon aerosol particles: A review of techniques, their limitations and uncertainties," Anal. Bioanal Chem., Vol. 406, 99-122, 2014.

    7. Kim, K. H., E. Kabir, and S. Kabir, "A review on the human health impact of airborne particulate matter," Environ. Int., Vol. 74, 136-143, 2015.

    8. Anderson, J. O., J. G. Thundiyil, and A. Stolbach, "Clearing the air: A review of the effects of particulate matter air pollution on human health," J. Med. Toxicol., Vol. 8, 166-175, 2012.

    9. Ram, K. and M. M. Sarin, "Absorption coefficient and site-specific mass absorption efficiency of elemental carbon in aerosols over urban, rural, and high-altitude sites in India," Environ. Sci. Technol., Vol. 43, 8233-8239, 2009.

    10. Weingartnera, E., H. Saathoff, M. Schnaiterb, N. Streita, B. Bitnarc, and U. Baltenspergera, "Absorption of light by soot particles: Determination of the absorption coefficient by means of aethalometers," J. Aerosol Sci., Vol. 34, 1445-1463, 2003.

    11. Schmid, O., P. Artaxo, W. P. Arnott, D. Chand, L. V. Gatti, G. P. Frank, A. Hoffer, M. Schnaiter, and M. O. Andreae, "Spectral light absorption by ambient aerosols influenced by biomass burning in the Amazon Basin. I: Comparison and field calibration of absorption measurement techniques," Atmos. Chem. Phys., Vol. 6, 3443-3462, 2006.

    12. Lack, D. A., E. R. Lovejoy, T. Baynard, A. Pettersson, and A. R. Ravishankara, "Aerosol absorption measurement using photoacoustic spectroscopy: Sensitivity, calibration, and uncertainty developments," Aerosol Sci. Technol., Vol. 40, 697-708, 2006.

    13. Thompson, J. E., N. Barta, D. Policarpio, and R. DuVall, "A fixed frequency aerosol albedometer," Opt. Express, Vol. 18, 2191-2205, 2008.

    14. Onasch, T. B., P. Massoli, P. L. Kebabian, F. B. Hills, F. W. Bacon, and A. Freedman, "Single scattering albedo monitor for airborne particulates," Aerosol Sci. Tech., Vol. 49, 267-279, 2015.

    15. Davies, N. W., M. I. Cotterell, C. Fox, K. Szpek, J. M. Haywood, and J. M. Langridge, "On the accuracy of aerosol photoacoustic spectrometer calibrations using absorption by ozone," Atmos. Meas. Tech., Vol. 11, 2313-2324, 2018.

    16. Arnott, W. P., H. Moosm¨uller, C. F. Rogers, T. Jin, and R. Bruch, "Photoacoustic spectrometer for measuring light absorption by aerosol: Instrument description," Atmos. Environ., Vol. 33, 2845-2852, 1999.

    17. Sigrist, M. W., Air Monitoring by Spectroscopic Techniques, John Wiley and Sons, New York, USA, 1994.

    18. Miklos, A. and P. Hess, "Application of acoustic resonators in photoacoustic trace gas analysis and metrology," Rev. Sci. Instrum., Vol. 72, 1937-1955, 2001.

    19. Bergstrom, R. W., P. Pilewskie, P. B. Russell, J. Redemann, T. C. Bond, P. K. Quinn, and B. Sierau, "Spectral absorption properties of atmospheric aerosols," Atmos. Chem. Phys., Vol. 7, 5937-5943, 2007.

    20. Wiegand, J. R., L. D. Mathews, and G. D. Smith, "A UV-V is photoacoustic spectrophotometer," Anal. Chem., Vol. 86, 6049-6056, 2014.

    21. Sharma, N., I. J. Arnold, H. Moosm¨uller, W. P. Arnott, and C. Mazzoleni, "Photoacoustic and nephelometric spectroscopy of aerosol optical properties with a supercontinuum light source," Atmos. Meas. Tech., Vol. 6, 3501-3513, 2013.

    22. Radney, J. G. and C. D. Zangmeister, "Measurement of gas and aerosol phase absorption spectra across the visible and near-IR using supercontinuum photoacoustic spectroscopy," Anal. Chem., Vol. 87, 7356-7363, 2015.

    23. Lewis, K., W. P. Arnott, H. Moosmuller, and C. E. Wold, "Strong spectral variation of biomass smoke light absorption and single scattering albedo observed with a novel dual-wavelength photoacoustic instrument," J. Geophys. Res., Vol. 113, D16203, 2008.

    24. Linke, C., I. Ibrahim, N. Schleicher, R. Hitzenberger, M. O. Andreae, T. Leisner, and M. Schnaiter, "A novel single-cavity three-wavelength photoacoustic spectrometer for atmospheric aerosol research," Atmos. Meas. Tech., Vol. 9, 533-5346, 2016.

    25. Fischer, D. A. and G. D. Smith, "A portable, four-wavelength, single-cell photoacoustic spectrometer for ambient aerosol absorption," Aerosol Sci. Tech., Vol. 52, 393-406, 2018.

    26. Fischer, C., M. W. Sigrist, Q. Yu, and M. Seiter, "Photoacoustic monitoring of trace gases by use of a diode-based difference frequency laser source," Opt. Lett., Vol. 26, 1609-1611, 2001.

    27. Wang, G., F. Shen, H. Yi, P. Hubert, A. Deguine, D. Petitprez, R. Maamary, P. Augustin, M. Fourmentin, E. Fertein, M. W. Sigrist, T.-N. Ba, and W. Chen, "Laser absorption spectroscopy applied to monitoring of short-lived climate pollutants (SLCPs)," J. Mol. Spectrosc., Vol. 348, 142-151, 2018.

    28. Arnott, W. P., H. Moosmuller, and J. W. Walker, "Nitrogen dioxide and kerosene-flame soot calibration of photoacoustic instruments for measurement of light absorption by aerosols," Rev. Sci. Instrum., Vol. 71, 4545-4552, 2000.

    29. Voigt, S., J. Orphal, and J. P. Burrow, "The temperature and pressure dependence of the absorption cross-sections of NO2 in the 250–800 nm region measured by Fourier-transform spectroscopy," J. Photochem. Photobiol. A: Chem., Vol. 149, 1-7, 2002.

    30. Lima, A. R., J. V. Martins, , L. A. Remer, N. A. Krotkov, M. H. Tabacniks, Y. B. Ami, and P. Artaxo, "Optical microphysical and compositional properties of the Eyjafjallaj¨okull volcanic ash," Atmos. Chem. Phys., Vol. 14, 10649-10661, 2014.

    31. Dragosics, M., O. Meinander, T. Jonsdottır, T. Durig, G. D. Leeuw, F. Palsson, P. D. Waldhauserova, and T. Thorsteinsson, "Insulation effects of Icelandic dust and volcanic ash on snow and ice," Arab J. Geosci., Vol. 9, 126, 2016.

    32. Vogel, A., S. Diplas, A. J. Durant, A. S. Azar, M. F. Sunding, W. I. Rose, A. Sytchkova, C. Bonadonna, K. Kruger, and A. Stohl, "Reference data set of volcanic ash physicochemical and optical properties," J. Geophys. Res. Atmos., Vol. 122, 9485-9514, 2016.

    33. Schumann, U., B. Weinzierl, O. Reitebuch, H. Schlager, A. Minikin, C. Forster, R. Baumann, T. Sailer, K. Graf, H. Mannstein, C. Voigt, S. Rahm, R. Simmet, M. Scheibe, M. Lichtenstern, P. Stock, H. R¨uba, D. Sch¨auble, A. Tafferner, M. Rautenhaus, T. Gerz, H. Ziereis, M. Krautstrunk, C. Mallaun, J.-F. Gayet, K. Lieke, K. Kandler, M. Ebert, S. Weinbruch, A. Stohl, J. Gasteiger, S. Groß, V. Freudenthaler, M. Wiegner, A. Ansmann, M. Tesche, H. Olafsson, and K. Sturm, "Airborne observations of the Eyjafjalla volcano ash cloud over Europe during air space closure in April and May 2010," Atmos. Chem. Phys., Vol. 11, 2245-2279, 2011.

    34. Alexander, D. and A. Kokhanovsky, Light Absorption and Scattering by Particles in the Atmosphere, Praxis Publishing Ltd., Chichester, UK, 2008.

    35. Andreae, M. O. and A. Gelencser, "Black carbon or brown carbon? The nature of light-absorbing carbonaceous aerosols," Atmos. Chem. Phys., Vol. 6, 3131-3148, 2006.

    36. Bond, T. C. and R. W. Bergstrom, "Light absorption by carbonaceous particles: An investigative review," Aerosol Sci. Tech., Vol. 40, 27-67, 2006.

    37. Bond, T. C., S. J. Doherty, D. W. Fahey, P. M. Forster, J. Berntsen, T. B. DeAngelo, M. G. Flanner, S. Ghan, B. K¨archer, D. Koch, S. Kinne, Y. Kondo, P. K. Quinn, M. C. Sarofim, M. G. Schultz, M. Schulz, C. Venkataraman, H. Zhang, S. Zhang, N. Bellouin, S. K. Guttikunda, P. K. Hopke, M. Z. Jacobson, J.W. Kaiser, Z. Klimont, U. Lohmann, J. P. Schwarz, D. Shindell, and T. Storelvmo, "Bounding the role of black carbon in the climate system: A scientific assessment," J. Geophys. Res. Atmos., Vol. 118, 5380-5552, 2013.

    38. Laskin, A., J. Laskin, and S. A. Nizkorodov, "Chemistry of atmospheric brown carbon," Chem. Rev., Vol. 115, 4335-4382, 2015.

    39. Lack, D. A. and J. M. Langridge, "On the attribution of black and brown carbon light absorption using the ˚Angstr¨om exponent," Atmos. Chem. Phys., Vol. 13, 10535-10543, 2013.

    40. Feng, Y., V. Ramanathan, and V. R. Kotamarthi, "Brown carbon: A significant atmospheric absorber of solar radiation?," Atmos. Chem. Phys., Vol. 13, 8607-8621, 2013.

    41. Sandradewi, J., A. S. H. Pr´evˆot, S. Szidat, N. Perron, M. R. Alfarra, V. A. Lanz, E.Weingartner, and U. Baltensperger, "Using aerosol light absorption measurements for the quantitative determination of wood burning and traffic emission contributions to particulate matter," Environ. Sci. Technol., Vol. 42, 3316-3323, 2008.

    42. Drinovec, L., G. Mocnik, P. Zotter, A. S. H. Prevot, C. Ruckstuhl, E. Coz, M. Rupakheti, J. Sciare, T. M¨uller, A. Wiedensohler, and A. D. A. Hansen, "The “dual-spot” Aethalometer: An improved measurement of aerosol black carbon with real-time loading compensation," Atmos. Meas. Tech., Vol. 8, 1965-1979, 2015.

    43. Tikhomirov, A. T., K. F. Firsov, V. K. Kozlov, M. P. Panchenko, Y. P. Ponomarev, and B. T. Tikhomirov, "Investigation of spectral dependence of shortwave radiation absorption by ambient aerosol using time-resolved photoacoustic technique," Opt. Eng., Vol. 44, 071203, 2005.

    44. Olson, M. R., M. V. Garcia, M. A. Robinson, P. V. Rooy, M. A. Dietenberger, M. Bergin, and J. J. Schauer, "Investigation of black and brown carbon multiple wavelength dependent light absorption from biomass and fossil fuel source emissions," J. Geophys. Res. Atmos., Vol. 120, 6682-6697, 2015.

    45. Devi, J. J., M. H. Bergin, M. Mckenzie, J. J. Schauer, and R. J.Weber, "Contribution of particulate brown carbon to light absorption in the rural and urban Southeast US," Atmos. Environ., Vol. 136, 95-104, 2016.

    46. Liu, K., J. Mei, W. Zhang, W. Chen, and X. Gao, "Multi-resonator photoacoustic spectroscopy," Sensor. Actuat. B-Chem., Vol. 251, 632-636, 2017.