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Collection of ultrafine diesel particulate matter (DPM) in cylindrical single-stage wet electrostatic precipitators.

Saiyasitpanich-P; Keener-TC; Lu-MM; Khang-SJ; Evans-DE
Environ Sci Technol 2006 Dec; 40(24):7890-7895
Long-term exposures to diesel particulate matter (DPM) emissions are linked to increasing adverse human health effects due to the potential association of DPM with carcinogenicity. Current diesel vehicular particulate emission regulations are based solely upon total mass concentration, albeit it is the submicrometer particles that are highly respirable and the most detrimental to human health. In this study, experiments were performed with a tubular single-stage wet electrostatic precipitator (wESP) to evaluate its performance for the removal of number-based DPM emissions. A nonroad diesel generator utilizing a low sulfur diesel fuel (500 ppm(w)) operating under varying load conditions was used as a stationary DPM emission source. An electrical low-pressure impactor (ELPI) was used to quantify the number concentration distributions of diesel particles in the diluted exhaust gas at each tested condition. The wESP was evaluated with respect to different operational control parameters such as applied voltage, gas residence time, etc., to determine their effect on overall collection efficiency, as well as particle size dependent collection efficiency. The results show that the total DPM number concentrations in the untreated diesel exhaust are in the magnitude of similar to 10(8)/cm(3) at all engine loads with the particle diameter modes between 20 and 40 nm. The measured collection efficiency of the wESP operating at 70 kV based on total particle numbers was 86% at 0 kW engine load and the efficiency decreased to 67% at 75 kW due to a decrease in gas residence time and an increase in particle concentrations. At a constant wESP voltage of 70 kV and at 75 kW engine load, the variation of gas residence time within the wESP from similar to 0.1 to similar to 0.4 s led to a substantial increase in the collection efficiency from 67% to 96%. In addition, collection efficiency was found to be directly related to the applied voltage, with increasing collection efficiency measured for increases in applied voltage. The collection efficiency based on particle size had a minimum for sizes between 20 and 50 nm, but at optimal wESP operating conditions it was possible to remove over 90% of all particle sizes. A comparison of measured and calculated collection efficiencies reveals that the measured values are significantly higher than the predicted values based on the well-known Deutsch equation.
Air-quality; Air-quality-control; Air-quality-measurement; Air-quality-monitoring; Air-sampling; Air-sampling-equipment; Air-sampling-techniques; Filter-materials; Filters; Gas-filters; Gas-sampling; Diesel-emissions; Particulate-sampling-methods; Particulates; Volumetric-analysis; Nanotechnology
TC Keener, Univ Cincinnati, Dept Civil & Environm Engn, Cincinnati, OH 45221
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Journal Article
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NIOSH Division
Priority Area
Work Environment and Workforce: Emerging Technologies; Personal Protective Technology
Source Name
Environmental Science and Technology
Performing Organization
University of Cincinnati
Page last reviewed: September 2, 2020
Content source: National Institute for Occupational Safety and Health Education and Information Division