Air ion measurements as a source of information about atmospheric aerosols


The mobility spectra of air ions recorded in the course of routine atmospheric electric measurements contain information about atmospheric aerosols. The mobility spectrum of air ions is correlated with the size spectrum of aerosol particles. Two procedures of conversion (and conversion errors) are considered in this paper assuming the steady state of charge distribution. The first procedure uses the fraction model of the aerosol particle size distribution and algebraic solution of the conversion problem. The second procedure uses the parametric KL model of the particle size distribution and the least square fitting of the mobility measurements. The procedures were tested using simultaneous side-by-side measurements of air ion mobilities and aerosol particle size distributions at a rural site during a monthly period. The comparison of results shows a promising agreement between the measured and calculated size spectra in the common size range. A supplementary information about nanometer particles was obtained from air ion measurements. (C) 1998 Elsevier Science B.V.