Physical Properties and Lung Deposition of Particles Emitted from Five Major Indoor Sources

Van Tuan Vu, Jakub Ondracek, Vladimir Zdímal, Jaroslav Schwarz, Juana Maria Delgado Saborit, Roy Harrison

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43 Citations (Scopus)
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The physical properties of indoor particles were measured with an SMPS system (Scanning Mobility Particle Sizer, 14.6-850 nm), an APS (Aerodynamic Particle Sizer, 0.54-18 µm) and an H-TDMA (Hygroscopic Tandem Differential Mobility Analyzer) in an apartment located in an urban background site in Prague (Czech Republic) from 15th August to 8th September, 2014. The total particle maximum number concentration was 9.38 × 104, 1.46 × 105, 2.89 × 104, 2.25 × 105 and 1.57 × 106 particles cm-3 for particles released from vacuum cleaning, soap/W5 cleaning spray, smoking, incense burning and cooking (frying) activities, respectively. Particles emitted from cleaning activities showed unimodal number size distributions, with the majority of particles (>98.2%) in the ultrafine size range (Dp <100 nm) and modes at a diameter of 19.8 nm for vacuum cleaning and 30.6 nm for soap/W5 cleaning. Smoking and incense burning predominantly generated particles in the accumulation mode with a count median diameter around 90-150 nm while cooking emissions showed a bimodal structure with a main mode at 47.8 nm. Particles from vacuum cleaning, incense burning, smoking and cooking emissions were found to be “nearly hydrophobic” with an average growth factor (Gf) around 1.01-1.10, while particles emitted from desk cleaning using organic compounds were found to be “less-hygroscopic” (Gf~1.12-1.16). Based on an adjusted MPPD model with a consideration of the hygroscopic properties of particles, the total lung deposition fractions of these particles by number when they penetrate into the human lung were 0.73 ± 0.02, 0.62 ± 0.03, 0.37 ± 0.03, 0.32 ± 0.03 and 0.49 ± 0.02 for vacuum cleaning, desk cleaning, smoking, incense burning and cooking, respectively.
Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)1–14
Number of pages14
JournalAir Quality, Atmosphere & Health
Issue number1
Early online date25 Aug 2016
Publication statusPublished - Jan 2017


  • indoor sources
  • particle size
  • hygroscopic growth
  • lung deposition


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