Analytical Chemistry Seminar
Comprehensive Analysis of the Gas- and Particle-Phase Products of VOC Oxidation, by Julia Bakker-Arkema/CU Boulder
Jointly sponsored by the Department of Chemistry and Biochemistry, CIRES, and the Environmental Program
Abstract: "Controlled environmental chamber studies are important for determining atmospheric reaction mechanisms and gas and aerosol products formed in the oxidation of volatile organic compounds (VOCs). Such information is necessary for developing detailed chemical models for use in predicting the atmospheric fate of VOCs and also secondary organic aerosol (SOA) formation. However, complete characterization of atmospheric oxidation reactions, including gas- and particle-phase product yields, and reaction branching ratios, are difficult to achieve. In this work, we investigated the reactions of terminal alkenes with OH radicals in the presence of NOx in an attempt to fully characterize the chemistry of these systems while minimizing and accounting for the inherent uncertainties associated with environmental chamber experiments. Gas-phase products (aldehydes formed by alkoxy radical decomposition) and particle-phase products (alkyl nitrates, β-hydroxynitrates, dihydroxynitrates, 1,4-hydroxynitrates, 1,4-hydroxycarbonyls, and dihydroxycarbonyls) formed through pathways involving addition of OH to the C=C double bond as well as H-atom abstraction were identified and quantified using a suite of analytical techniques. The full product identification and quantitation, with careful minimization of uncertainties for the various components of the experiment and analyses, demonstrates our capability to comprehensively and accurately analyze the complex chemical composition of products formed in the oxidation of organic compounds in laboratory chamber studies."