Seasonal PM10 dynamics in Kathmandu valley

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Journal Article
Atmospheric Environment, 2008, 42 (37), pp. 8623 - 8633
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Data on ambient PM10 levels from six locations in the Kathmandu Valley recorded by means of continuous sampling using low volume air samplers from October 2002 to March 2007 were used to investigate PM10 concentration dynamics in the valley. Monthly average data of the urban areas, which have much higher concentrations than the rural areas, even exceeded the daily standard level of PM10, in Nepal, 120 ?m m-3. Repetitive peaks and troughs each year indicated annual patterns. Monthly average showed seasonal patterns are different between rural area and urban sites. The highest monthly average concentration was observed in February, the end of winter in urban areas where as in rural found in spring, and the lowest concentration was observed in July (monsoon period). The continuous increase in PM10 concentration from December to February in urban areas showed accumulation of PM10 in the ambient air during the wintertime. Rainfall in June and September, during the monsoon period, caused a PM10 concentration decrease, demonstrating that precipitation is effective in removing PM10 from the valley. Cross correlation analyses among the PM10 levels measured simultaneously at the sampling stations showed a poor relationship in winter; however, there were good relationships in the monsoon and post-monsoon seasons. Both the PM10 concentration and the air-mixing environment in the valley were closely associated with the temperature and wind speed.
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