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Atmospheric Measurement Techniques An interactive open-access journal of the European Geosciences Union

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© Author(s) 2013. This work is distributed
under the Creative Commons Attribution 3.0 License.
Research article
14 May 2013
Review status
This discussion paper has been under review for the journal Atmospheric Measurement Techniques (AMT). A final paper in AMT is not foreseen.
Quantitative measurement of PM10 by means of X-ray fluorescence spectra
E. Busetto1, M. Peloi1, L. Rebuffi1, and E. Tefouet Kana2 1Elettra-Sincrotrone Trieste S.C.p.A., S.S. 14 km 163.5 in Area Science Park, 34139 Basovizza, Trieste, Italy
2Elettra ICTP Fellows, The Abdus Salam International Centre for Theoretical Physics,Strada Costiera, 11, 34151 Trieste, Italy
Abstract. We developed an automatic device able to sample and analyze in situ and in real time airborne particulate matter (PM) using the X-ray fluorescence of the chemical species layered on a filter, having atomic numbers between 19 (Potassium) and 82 (Lead). Furthermore, we developed a calibration technique, which gives the parameters for real time automatic determination of the absolute mass of the chemical species present on the sample, with a sensitivity varying from 1 to 100 μg per sample.

Our system could represent a simpler alternative to the complex and sophisticated laboratory measurements, such as Inductively Coupled Plasma Mass Spectrometry (ICP-MS) or Inductively Coupled Plasma-Atomic Emission Spectrometry (ICP-AES), officially used by environmental agencies. A 6 month in-situ test, carried out in collaboration with the local Regional Environmental Agency, showed that our system gives results comparable with the ones obtained using existing techniques, but with smaller errors. The methodology developed has been submitted for a patent.

Citation: Busetto, E., Peloi, M., Rebuffi, L., and Tefouet Kana, E.: Quantitative measurement of PM10 by means of X-ray fluorescence spectra, Atmos. Meas. Tech. Discuss., 6, 4313-4332, doi:10.5194/amtd-6-4313-2013, 2013.
E. Busetto et al.
E. Busetto et al.


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