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Title: Evidence of Aerosols as a Media for Rapid Daytime HONO Production over China

Current knowledge of daytime HONO sources remains incomplete. A large missing daytime HONO source has been found in many places around the world, including polluted regions in China. Conventional understanding and recent studies attributed this missing source mainly to ground surface processes or gas-phase chemistry, while assuming aerosols to be an insignificant media for HONO production. We analyze in situ observations of HONO and its precursors at an urban site in Beijing, China, and report an apparent dependence of the missing HONO source strength on aerosol surface area and solar ultraviolet radiation. Based on extensive correlation analysis and process-modeling, we propose that the rapid daytime HONO production in Beijing can be explained by enhanced hydrolytic disproportionation of NO2 on aqueous aerosol surfaces due to catalysis by dicarboxylic acid anions. The combination of high abundance of NO2, aromatic hydrocarbons, and aerosols over broad regions in China likely leads to elevated HONO levels, rapid OH production, and enhanced oxidizing capacity on a regional basis. Our findings call for attention to aerosols as a media for daytime heterogeneous HONO production in polluted regions like Beijing. This study also highlights the complex and uncertain heterogeneous chemistry in China, which merits future efforts of reconcilingmore » regional modeling and laboratory experiments, in order to understand and mitigate the regional particulate and O3 pollutions over China.« less
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Journal Article
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Journal Name: Environmental Science & Technology, 48(24):14386-14391
Research Org:
Pacific Northwest National Laboratory (PNNL), Richland, WA (US)
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Country of Publication:
United States