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Impacts of Aviation Emissions on Near-Airport Residential Air Quality

  • Neelakshi Hudda*
    Neelakshi Hudda
    Department of Civil and Environmental Engineering, Tufts University, 200 College Avenue, Medford, Massachusetts 02155, United States
    *Email: [email protected]
  • Liam W. Durant
    Liam W. Durant
    Department of Electrical and Computer Engineering, Tufts University, 161 College Avenue, Medford, Massachusetts 02155, United States
  • Scott A. Fruin
    Scott A. Fruin
    Department of Preventive Medicine, Keck School of Medicine, University of Southern California, 2001 N. Soto Street, Los Angeles, California 90033, United States
  • , and 
  • John L. Durant
    John L. Durant
    Department of Civil and Environmental Engineering, Tufts University, 200 College Avenue, Medford, Massachusetts 02155, United States
Cite this: Environ. Sci. Technol. 2020, 54, 14, 8580–8588
Publication Date (Web):July 8, 2020
Copyright © 2020 American Chemical Society

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    Impacts of aviation emissions on air quality in and around residences near airports remain underexamined. We measured gases (CO, CO2, NO, and NO2) and particles (black carbon, particle-bound aromatic hydrocarbons, fine particulate matter (PM2.5), and ultrafine particles (reported using particle number concentrations (PNC) as a proxy)) continuously for 1 month at a residence near the Logan International Airport, Boston. The residence was located under a flight trajectory of the most utilized runway configuration. We found that when the residence was downwind of the airport, the concentrations of all gaseous and particulate pollutants (except PM2.5) were 1.1- to 4.8-fold higher than when the residence was not downwind of the airport. Controlling for runway usage and meteorology, the impacts were highest during overhead landing operations: average PNC was 7.5-fold higher from overhead landings versus takeoffs on the closest runway. Infiltration of aviation-origin emissions resulted in indoor PNC that were comparable to ambient concentrations measured locally on roadways and near highways. In addition, ambient NO2 concentrations at the residence exceeded those measured at regulatory monitoring sites in the area including near-road monitors. Our results highlight the need for further characterization of outdoor and indoor impacts of aviation emissions at the neighborhood scale to more accurately estimate residential exposures.

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    • Maps showing preferred runway configurations, traffic around the near-airport site and regulatory sites, details of instruments, summary of concentrations, diurnal trends for pollutants and meteorological parameters, correlations between pollutants and between pollutants and flight activity, illustration of particle infiltration and trends of the I/O ratios with respect to the temporal and meteorological parameters, and comparison of near-airport concentrations to those at regulatory sites including the diurnal patterns and their discussion and a concentration summary table (PDF)

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