A study of impact of Asian dusts and their transport pathways to Hong Kong, using multiple AERONET data, trajectory and in-situ measurements

Man Sing Wong, Janet Elizabeth Nichol, Kwon Ho Lee

Research output: Chapter in book / Conference proceedingConference article published in proceeding or bookAcademic researchpeer-review


Hong Kong, a commercial and financial city located in south-east China has suffered serious air pollution for the last decade due largely to rapid urban and industrial expansion of the cities of mainland China. However, the potential sources and pathways of aerosols transported to Hong Kong have not been well researched due to the lack of air quality monitoring stations in southern China. Here, an integrated method combining the AErosol RObotic NETwork (AERONET) data, trajectory and Potential Source Contribution Function (PSCF) modeling is used to identify the potential transport pathways and contribution of sources from four characteristic aerosol types. Four characteristic aerosol types were defined using a total of 730 AERONET data measurements between 2005 and 2008. They are coastal urban, polluted urban, dust (likely to be long distance desert dust), and heavy pollution. Results show that the sources of polluted urban and heavy pollution are associated with industrial emissions in southern China, whereas coastal urban aerosols have been affected both from natural marine aerosol and emissions. The PSCF map of dust shows a wide range of pathways followed by east- and south-eastwards trajectories from northwest China to Hong Kong. Although the contribution from dust sources is small compared to the anthropogenic aerosols, a serious recent dust outbreak has been observed in Hong Kong with an elevation of the Air Pollution Index to 500, compared with 50-100 on normal days. Therefore, the combined use of clustered AERONET data, trajectory and the PSCF models can help to resolve the longstanding issue about source regions and characteristics of pollutants carried to Hong Kong.
Original languageEnglish
Title of host publicationRemote Sensing of the Atmosphere and Clouds III
Publication statusPublished - 1 Dec 2010
EventRemote Sensing of the Atmosphere and Clouds III - Incheon, Korea, Republic of
Duration: 12 Oct 201014 Oct 2010


ConferenceRemote Sensing of the Atmosphere and Clouds III
Country/TerritoryKorea, Republic of


  • Aerosol
  • Back trajectory
  • Potential Source Contribution Function

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Electronic, Optical and Magnetic Materials
  • Condensed Matter Physics
  • Computer Science Applications
  • Applied Mathematics
  • Electrical and Electronic Engineering


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