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Exposure assessment of diesel bus emissions
AuthorYip, Maricela ; Madl, Pierre ; Wiegand, Aaron ; Hofmann, Werner
Published in
International Journal of Environmental Research and Public Health, Basel, 2006, Vol. 2006, Issue 3, page 309-315
PublishedMDPI, 2006
Document typeJournal Article
Keywords (EN)Ultrafine particles / diesel engine exhaust / exposure assessment
URNurn:nbn:at:at-ubs:3-6262 Persistent Identifier (URN)
 The work is publicly available
Exposure assessment of diesel bus emissions [0.3 mb]
Abstract (English)

The goal of this study was to measure ultrafine particle concentrations with diameters less than 1 m emitted by diesel buses and to assess resulting human exposure levels. The study was conducted at the Woolloongabba Busway station in Brisbane, Australia in the winter months of 2002 during which temperature inversions frequently occurred. Most buses that utilize the station are fuelled by diesel, the exhaust of which contains a significant quantity of particle matter. Passengers waiting at the station are exposed to these particles emitted from the buses. During the course of this study, passenger census was conducted, based on video surveillance, yielding person-by-person waiting time data. Furthermore, a bus census revealed accurate information about the total number of diesel versus Compressed Natural Gas (CNG) powered buses. Background (outside of the bus station) and platform measurements of ultrafine particulate number size distributions were made to determine ambient aerosol concentrations. Particle number exposure concentration ranges from 10 and 40 to 60% of bus related exhaust fumes. This changes dramatically when considering the particle mass exposure concentration, where most passengers are exposed to about 50 to 80% of exhaust fumes. The obtained data can be very significant for comparison with similar work of this type because it is shown in previous studies that exhaust emissions causes cancer in laboratory animals. It was assumed that significant differences between platform and background distributions were due to bus emissions which, combined with passenger waiting times, yielded an estimate of passenger exposure to ultrafine particles from diesel buses. From an exposure point of view, the Busway station analyzed resembles a street canyon. Although the detected exhaust particle concentration at the outbound platform is found to be in the picogram range, exposure increases with the time passengers spend on the platform along with their breathing frequency

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