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Monitoring and evaluation of Terni (Central Italy) air quality through spatially resolved analysis
* 1 , 1 , 1 , 2 , 2 , 1 , 1
1  Sapienza University of Rome, Department of Chemistry, Rome, Italy
2  DIT, Dublin Institute of Technology, School of Chemistry & Pharmaceutical Sciences, Dublin, Ireland


The air quality of Terni was evaluated during a six months monitoring campaign carried out from December 2016 to May 2017. Terni is a city of Central Italy situated in an intramountain depression delimited by the Apennine mountain range. It contains many sources of airborne particulate matter such as vehicular traffic, domestic heating, a power plant for waste treatment and a steel plant. Furthermore, the meteorological conditions of Terni basin limit the dispersion and enhance the accumulation of the atmospheric pollutants. Hence, Terni is an ideal area for the mapping of the spatial variations of PM10 chemical species through innovative analytical methods.

Spatially resolved data were obtained at a monthly temporal resolution by innovative, low flow and self-powered samplers working in parallel at 25 strategic sites. PM10 chemical composition was determined by applying a multiparametric procedure (macro-elements, micro-elements and inorganic ions) previously optimized and validated [1]. This procedure enabled the separation between the water-soluble and the residual fraction of each analyzed element. The application of a chemical fractionation procedure proved to be a valuable approach for the characterization of PM10 and for increasing the selectivity of elements as source tracers [2].

The spatial mapping of the source tracers resulted to be efficient for the individuation of the PM10 chemical source profiles and for the evaluation of the dispersion capacities of PM10 chemical species. In addition silent samplers were utilized to evaluate the air quality of indoor environments (such as dwellings and schools) by calculating the infiltration ratio (indoor/outdoor concentration) of each analyzed source tracer. The information obtained can be used to validate the dispersion models and to improve the evaluation of human exposure to PM.


[1] S. Canepari, E. Cardarelli, A. Giuliano, A. Pietrodangelo, Talanta 69 (2006) 581–587.

[2] S. Canepari, A. Pietrodangelo, C. Perrino, M.L. Astolfi , M.L. Marzo, Atmospheric Environment 43 (2009) 4754–4765.

Keywords: Terni air quality, spatially resolved analysis, airborne particulate matter, chemical fractionation, source tracers, chemical source profiles, PM spatial mapping, dispersion capacity, indoor PM, infiltration ratio