Mapping temporal and spatial variations in air quality using real-time mobile mass spectrometry

This project will support the development of mobile sensor technology and data processing techniques that can be used to identify, characterize, and map contaminant sources that impact air quality in British Columbia. Volatile and semi-volatile organic compounds (VOC/SVOCs) are present in the atmosphere as a result of human activities and natural sources. These compounds are important for air quality management as they can be detrimental to human health both directly (some, such as benzene, are carcinogens) and indirectly as precursors to ground-level ozone (a respiratory irritant). The development of real-time, mobile mass spectrometry for mapping and tracking of VOC/SVOCs on the regional scale will improve our understanding of factors that impact air quality and contribute to the formation of ground-level ozone formation. This technology will support policy objectives in the Fraser basin aimed at minimizing the frequency and severity of chronic and acute exposure to toxic air pollutants.

Larissa Richards
Faculty Supervisor: 
Erik Krogh
British Columbia
Partner University: