Carbonyl emissions from vehicular exhausts sources in Hong Kong

Steven Sai Hang Ho, Kin Fai Ho, Shuncheng Lee, Yan Cheng, Jian Zhen Yu, Ka Man Lam, Natale Sin Yau Feng, Yu Huang

Research output: Journal article publicationJournal articleAcademic researchpeer-review

46 Citations (Scopus)


Vehicular emission (VE) is one of the important anthropogenic sources for airborne carbonyls in urban area. Six types of VE-dominated samples were collected at representative locations in Hong Kong where polluted by a particular fueled type of vehicles, including (i) a gas refilling taxis station (liquefied petroleum gas [LPG] emission); (ii) a light-duty passenger car park (gasoline emission); (iii) a minibus station (diesel emission); (iv) a single-deck-bus depot (diesel emission); (v) a double-deck-bus depot (diesel emission); and (vi) a whole-food market entrance for light- and heavy-duty vehicles (diesel emission). A total of 15 carbonyls in the samples were quantified. Formaldehyde was the most abundant carbonyl among the VE-dominated samples, and its contribution to the total quantified amount on a molar basis ranged from 54.8% to 60.8%. Acetaldehyde and acetone were the next two abundant carbonyls. The carbonyls were quantified at three roadside locations in Hong Kong. The highest concentrations of formaldehyde and acetaldehyde, 22.7 ± 8.4 and 6.0 ± 2.8 μg/m3, respectively, were determined in the samples collected at a main transportation gate for goods between Hong Kong and Mainland China. The total quantified carbonyl concentration, 37.9 ± 9.3 μg/m3, was the highest at an entrance of a cross-harbor tunnel in downtown area. The theoretical carbonyls compositions of the three roadside locations were estimated according to the VE-dominated sample profiles and the statistics on vehicle numbers and types during the sampling period. The measured compositions of formaldehyde were much higher than the theoretical compositions in summer, demonstrating that photochemical reactions significantly contributed to the formaldehyde production in the roadsides.
Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)221-234
Number of pages14
JournalJournal of the Air and Waste Management Association
Issue number2
Publication statusPublished - 1 Jan 2012

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Waste Management and Disposal
  • Management, Monitoring, Policy and Law


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