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Variations of the particulate carbon distribution from a nonroad diesel generator.

Liu ZF; Lu MM; Birch ME; Keener TC; Khang SJ; Liang FY
Environ Sci Technol 2005 Oct; 39(20):7840-7844
The emissions of diesel particulate matter (DPM) from diesel engines are causing increasing health concerns due to their suspected carcinogenicity, especially the carbonaceous fractions. The total DPM emissions and the organic and elemental carbon (OC and EC) distributions of the DPM depend on many operating factors, such as load, engine design parameters, fuel sulfur content, fuel usage rate, and sampling conditions. Results of previous studies on the OC/EC variations with load for heavy-duty vehicles have been reported, but information is scarce for nonroad diesel generators. There is a clear need to better characterize nonroad DPM emissions, as studies have indicated that DPM emissions from nonroad diesel engines are significantly higher than those from on-road sources. The objective of the study is to provide a detailed account of the OC/EC distributions for a nonroad diesel generator operated with high and low sulfur fuels under different load conditions. DPM emissions were collected using an EPA Method 5 (Determination of Particulate Matter Emissions from Stationary Sources) sampling train. The OC and EC concentrations were quantified by NIOSH Method 5040. DPM concentrations and the relative contributions of OC, EC, and noncarbonaceous materials vary significantly with engine load, fuel sulfur content, and sample collection temperature. The fractions of EC over DPM increase with increasing load from 21% at 0kW to 84% at 75 kW for the low sulfur fuel, while those of OC decrease from 62% to 9%. This is consistent with other studies, and the same trends exist regardless of the sulfur content and DPM collection temperature. The fractions of organic compounds range from 77% to 19% for the high sulfur fuel. Noncarbonaceous materials are from 27% to 18% in fraction from high sulfur DPM as opposed to the 17% to 7% in the low sulfur diesel emissions. At lower collection temperatures, more OC and noncarbonaceous materials are observed.
Diesel-exhausts; Diesel-emissions; Diesel-engines; Health-hazards; Carcinogenicity; Carcinogenesis; Carcinogens; Particulates; Particulate-sampling-methods; Sampling; Sampling-methods; Organic-compounds
U.S. Department of Health and Human Services, Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, National Institute for Occupational Safety and Health, Division of Applied Research and Technology, 4676 Columbia Parkway, Cincinnati, Ohio 45226
Publication Date
Document Type
Journal Article
Funding Amount
Funding Type
Fiscal Year
Identifying No.
Issue of Publication
NIOSH Division
Priority Area
Research Tools and Approaches: Exposure Assessment Methods; Personal Protective Technology
Source Name
Environmental Science and Technology
Performing Organization
University of Cincinnati
Page last reviewed: August 5, 2022
Content source: National Institute for Occupational Safety and Health Education and Information Division