Quantifications of 10 polycyclic aromatic hydrocarbons (PAHs) and 13 aliphatic hydrocarbons (AHs) ranging from n-C20 to n-C32 were reported in 17 homes and their adjacent outdoor environment in Hong Kong. It was found that PAHs were predominantly associated with PM1.9, which contributed about 98 and 97% to the indoor and outdoor PM10 PAHs, respectively. Also, indoor PAH levels seemed to be lower than outdoor PAH levels, both in the fine mode and in the coarse mode particles. The mean total PAH content in the indoor PM10 was found to be 3.42 ng·m-3 and it was 5.18 ng·m-3 in the outdoor PM10. It might demonstrate that there was no presence of indoor PAH sources in these homes. In contrast to PAH, AH levels were found to be higher indoors both in the fine mode and in the coarse mode particles. In addition, the concentrations of indoor and outdoor AH were significantly higher than their corresponding PAH levels. The mean total AH content in the indoor PM10 was 104.42 ng·m-3 and 94.06 ng·m-3 in the outdoor PM10. For PM1.9, the total indoor AH content was 80.40 ng·m-3 and the outdoor content was 70.55 ng·m-3 on average. The distribution patterns of the indoor and outdoor AHs were similar, with maximum AH concentration varying from n-C27 to n-C31. The carbon preference indexes, which ranged from 0.84 to 2.62 for indoor and from 1.13 to 3.89 for outdoor environment, indicate the mixed origin of biogenic and anthropogenic sources in these homes.
- Aliphatic hydrocarbons
- Polycyclic aromatic hydrocarbons
ASJC Scopus subject areas
- Public Health, Environmental and Occupational Health