Variabilidad de niveles y composición del material particulado en suspensión en el sudeste de la Península Ibérica

Supervised by:
  1. Xavier Querol Carceller Director
  2. Stella Moreno Grau Director

Defence university: Universidad Politécnica de Cartagena

Fecha de defensa: 20 May 2010

  1. José María Moreno Grau Chair
  2. María del Mar Viana Secretary
  3. Casimiro Adriao Pio Committee member
  4. Panos Athanasiadis Committee member
  5. Peter Scheff Committee member
  1. Ingeniería Química y Ambiental

Type: Thesis


Sources of Particulate Matter (PM) may be either natural or anthropogenic, the formers cannot be controlled, while management plans may be applied to the latters. As any source has its own tracers, its contribution can be identify and quantify. Regulations allow for considering the contributions of natural sources. Objectives: To understand the levels of PM10 and PM2.5 in ambient air and quantify its components. To identify and quantify the contributions of sources. Material and methods: Samples of PM (PM10 and PM2.5) have been taken in Cartagena (Bastarreche, Santa Ana and Mompeán), Spain. These samples have been weighed and chemically analyzed (ICP-MS, ICP-AES, Ion Chromatography, Carbonaceous Fraction). Assessment of results of data from the Network for the Air Quality Monitoring in the Region of Murcia. Statistical tools have been applied to define: origin of air masses; atmospheric scenarios with associated presence of African dust over the area; net African dust load; source apportionment. Results: PM10, the highest levels for crustal (mineral) species appear at Santa Ana, whereas those species which indicate industrial activity peak at Bastarreche. PM2.5, the highest levels, except for the mass, appear at Mompeán. The episodes with the lowest PM10 are Northern Atlantic, Northwestern Atlantic and Western Atlantic. The Southwestern Atlantic is a usual origin of African dust contribution. The local contribution is mainly present in Regional episodes. The typical weak Mediterranean gradient of pressure, for which there is an African advection reaching the Region of Murcia, allows for the definition of a fifth (new) scenario, which means up to 21% of days with dust outbreak. There have been 562 days with dust outbreak: the estimation of the African dust to the annual mean is between 4-6 µg/m3. Conclusion: In the medium term, plans for the environmental management of Cartagena's inner city will have to focus on traffic.