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ARS Home » Midwest Area » Bowling Green, Kentucky » Food Animal Environmental Systems Research » Research » Publications at this Location » Publication #347233

Research Project: Developing Safe, Efficient and Environmentally Sound Management Practices for the Use of Animal Manure

Location: Food Animal Environmental Systems Research

Title: Modeling the potential for sulfur compounds from agricultural waste to impact aerosol formation

item NEE, MATTHEW - Western Kentucky University
item BERLANGA, JESUS - Western Kentucky University
item Silva, Philip - Phil
item VAN ROOY, PAUL - University Of California
item COCKER III, DAVID - University Of California
item PURVIS-ROBERTS, KATHLEEN - Claremont Colleges

Submitted to: American Chemical Society Abstracts
Publication Type: Abstract Only
Publication Acceptance Date: 12/20/2017
Publication Date: 3/18/2018
Citation: Nee, M., Berlanga, J., Silva, P.J., Van Rooy, P., Cocker Iii, D.R., Purvis-Roberts, K. 2018. Modeling the potential for sulfur compounds from agricultural waste to impact aerosol formation. American Chemical Society Abstracts. Paper No. AGFD7.

Interpretive Summary:

Technical Abstract: Agricultural waste, particular from animal production, generates both sulfur- and nitrogen-containing organic compounds, both of which undergo photolysis and oxidative processes in the gas phase. As field studies have begun to show the anomalous gas-phase compositions at and near swine, poultry, and other animal facilities, aerosol emissions have also begun to come into focus. Aerosol chamber experiments on dimethyl sulfide (DMS) and dimethyl disulfide (DMDS) produce modest amounts of SO2 and, ultimately, sulfate-containing aerosols. However, addition of even very small amounts of amines increases aerosol production by an order of magnitude. Here, we present kinetic and computational models to help explain these surprising results. By modeling the production of SO2 in the gas phase, and comparing to data from chamber experiments, we suggest that the increase in aerosol arises from the generation of organic radicals necessary to initiate the process of secondary organic aerosol (SOA) formation. The high levels of aerosol production in DMDS (compared to DMS) are dominated by disulfide bond cleavage rather than by oxidation, meaning that even a small amount of DMDS can produce large amounts of aerosol, especially in the presence of amines or ammonia. The models also allow prediction of the rates of pickup of different compounds into aerosols during the chamber experiments. Decreases in particle number and changes in composition with relative humidity suggest that formation of dry cores may actually favor SOA formation. All of this data together suggests that agricultural sites may be a disproportionately large source of atmospeheric aerosols, at least in part because of the unique combination of sulfides and amines that they emit.