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Atmospheric Environment

  • account_circleTakashi AmagaiPhD, Prof.
  • account_circleKazushi NoroPhD, Research Asst. Prof.
Development of analytical methods and risk assessment for hazardous air pollutants.
Emission, dynamics, environmental fate, and exposure of hazardous air pollutants.
We cannot live even a few minutes if there is no air. The weight of the air that a person breathes in a day is usually 10–25 kg. Therefore, the quality of air has a significant effect on human health. We have developed analytical methods for gaseous and particulate hazards in the air, such as volatile organic compounds (VOCs), polycyclic aromatic hydrocarbons (PAHs), PM2.5, and so on. Emission sources, dynamics, and degradation mechanisms of these compounds have been identified and studied. We have also estimated how much of these compounds we are exposed to. To achieve these objects, we have developed samplers for pollutants, pretreatment methods, and analytical methods using HPLC or GC/MS. Then we have discussed risk assessment of hazardous compounds in the air.
1. Development of analytical methods and risk assessment for hazardous air pollutants.

Polycyclic Aromatic Hydrocarbons (PAHs) are typical carcinogens and/or mutagens in the air. Some halogenated or nitro PAHs are also carcinogens or mutagens. We have developed highly sensitive and selective analytical methods for PAHs using HPLC/spectrofluorometry or GC/MS.

2. Indoor pollution.

Since we spend most of our time indoors, indoor air quality is important for our health. Recently, indoor air pollutants have been detected in high concentrations. We have developed simple sampling methods including passive sampler and analytical methods for indoor pollutants. We have also surveyed indoor air pollution in more than 200 houses. Emission sources have been identified for these pollutants.

3. Exposure assessments for hazardous compounds.

Exposure assessment is a step of risk assessment. It involves estimating the number and characteristics of persons exposed to a hazard at various intensities and durations. We have developed exposure assessment methods for hazardous compounds. Passive samplers have some advantages in the determination of personal inhalation exposure.

Figure 1
Spatial distribution of benzene, carcinogen, in the Fuji city.
Figure 2
Ultra low noise sampler for personal exposure of PM2.5 and PAHs.