2001 Progress Report: Health Risks of Particulate Matter Components: Center Service Core

EPA Grant Number: R827351C009
Subproject: this is subproject number 009 , established and managed by the Center Director under grant R827351
(EPA does not fund or establish subprojects; EPA awards and manages the overall grant for this center).

Center: EPA NYU PM Center: Health Risks of PM Components
Center Director: N/A
Title: Health Risks of Particulate Matter Components: Center Service Core
Investigators: Chen, Lung Chi
Institution: New York University School of Medicine
EPA Project Officer: Chung, Serena
Project Period: June 1, 1999 through May 31, 2004
Project Period Covered by this Report: June 1, 2000 through May 31, 2001
RFA: Airborne Particulate Matter (PM) Centers (1999) RFA Text |  Recipients Lists
Research Category: Air Quality and Air Toxics , Particulate Matter , Air

Objective:

The responsibility of the New York University (NYU) U.S. Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) Particulate Matter (PM) Center Service Core is to advance the objectives of the three projects underway: (1) X-ray Fluorescence (XRF) Instrument Validation and Optimization; (2) Ion Chromatography (IC); and (3) Mobile Air Monitoring.

Progress Summary:

XRF Instrument Validation and Optimization. In the past 2 years, Dr. Polina Maciejczyk made considerable progress in setting up the x-ray fluorescent (XRF) measurement system. Several modifications were made; the turret wheel of one secondary fluorescer was realigned, which significantly increased the analytical sensitivity. Extensive work was completed to decrease noise and to improve resolution.

Samples obtained from other XRF facilities (Research Triangle Park [RTP], NC, Chester Labs, National Institute of Standards and Technology [NIST], and the Oregon Department of Environmental Quality) are being quantified as a part of the intercomparisons study. The agreement is consistent for the first row transition elements (<10 percent). Lighter elements show a lesser agreement (30 percent), and He flush failure is a primary suspect. Fifth- and sixth-row elements are hardly present in ambient air samples and report very high uncertainties (50-100 percent).

After the XRF instrument was replaced in October 2002, it became apparent that its operational software (Jordan Valley, nEXT v1.b12) was not developed to the extent of providing satisfactory analysis results. Most of the important analytical endpoints (uncertainties of the measurement, spectral resolution of overlapping peaks for As and Se) were non-existent. Dr. Maciejczyk then installed EPA's XRF spectra processing software, XRF 2000, recently converted for Windows. Dr. Maciejczyk visited the EPA XRF Facility at RTP between February 18th and 22nd, where Charles Lewis, Robert Kellogg, and Michael Barlow conducted the appropriate training.

The EPA software is rigorous and complex and assumes a more elaborate calibration procedure than that used by Jordan Valley. We adopted EPA's current protocol for sample analysis and are using five secondary fluorescers to analyze for 34 elements. Comparison of results of NIST SRM 2783, SRM 1649a, EPA multielemental polymer films and elemental standards run as unknowns acquired with NYU’s instrument after processing with the EPA software showed good agreement with certified values (see Table 1).

Besides direct XRF software instructions, EPA XRF personnel provided multiple recommendations on purchasing and making additional reference and calibration standards, quality control (QC) procedures, archiving, and data management. We adopted EPA's QC and assurance protocol with some modifications to suit our instrument and available standards. Additionally, EPA provided us with an efficient program to convert NYU spectra file names to EPA software acceptable names.

Our XRF instrument has been fully operational since March 2002. During this period, routine XRF analyses for 34 elements were performed for Center investigators (Drs. Lippmann, Thurston, Chen, and Cohen).

Ion Chromatography. IC has been operational since June 1999. During this period, routine IC analysis to measure concentrations of nitrate and sulfate were performed for Center investigators. For Dr. Thurston, sulfate concentrations from approximately 1,000 air filter samples taken from 9 cities in the United States were measured. For Dr. Chen, sulfate and nitrate concentrations of more than 200 samples collected from a combustion system were measured. It is anticipated that this instrument will continue to be used as a routine measurement system for soluble ions.

Mobile Air Monitoring Van. One study that is partially funded by the PM Center has been initiated, which involves measuring air quality at various sites in the South Bronx of New York City for comparison to measures obtained at a central monitoring site. For this purpose, a mobile monitoring van will be used. The van was mechanically overhauled with new tires, brakes, exhaust manifold, and air conditioning systems. Overall performance and safety checks also were performed. For the current "Air Quality in the South Bronx" study, equipment is being installed in the van to monitor concentrations of PM10, PM2.5, black/organic carbon, ozone, nitrogen oxides, sulfur dioxide, and carbon monoxide. This equipment is as follows:

· Tapered Element Oscillating Microbalance (TEOM): direct, continuous measurement of particulate mass will be accomplished using TEOM technology. The TEOM has received EPA certification for continuous PM10 monitoring and also is capable of measuring PM2.5. Concentration data are reported in µg/m3 at standard averaging times of 10 minutes, 30 minutes, 1 hour, 8 hours, and 24 hours. The instrument includes software to view results and control system operation from an onboard personal computer via a serial port connector, providing real-time outputs for quality control checks. We also purchased an Automatic Cartridge Collector to collect ambient PM samples for elemental analysis using XRF.

Table 1. Ratios of NYU Measurements to Certified Values

 
Standards*
Average of SRM**
Polymers***
Na
1.00
0.63
Mg
1.00
0.79
Al
1.00
1.15
Si
1.04
1.21
P
1.64
1.20
S
0.74
1.08
Cl
0.89
0.76
K
0.88
0.90
Ca
0.98
1.08
Ti
1.07
1.04
V
1.00
1.17
Cr
0.96
1.28
1.02
Mn
0.83
1.09
1.06
Fe
1.14
1.10
1.07
Co
1.00
0.97
Ni
0.82
0.61
0.85
Cu
1.00
1.05
1.00
Zn
1.01
1.21
1.08
As
0.99
1.29
Se
1.05
1.08
Br
0.97
0.89
Sr
0.69
1.01
Cd
0.93
1.16
Sb
0.96
1.16
Ba
0.95
1.04
Pb
0.93
1.32
1.05
* number varies depending on element from n=1 to 4
** SRM 1649a (n=2) and 2783 (n=6)
*** Multielemental polymer films from EPA (n=9)


· Aethalometer, RTA9-E1-Man-b, Andersen Instrument Corporation: black ("elemental") carbon, a key component of diesel exhaust, will be measured by the AE-14U aethalometer (Magee Scientific, Boulder, CO). The instrument detection limit is 1 ng of elemental carbon at temporal resolution selectable from 1 minute to 1 hour. It includes an embedded computer so that the data can be downloaded directly to an onboard PC in the van.

· Carbon Monoxide Monitor, Model 48C, Thermo Environmental Instrument Inc.

· Multigas Calibrator, Model 146C-432-111, with permeation oven and zero air generator, Thermo Environmental Instrument Inc.

· Monitor Weather Station II, Product #73545.001, Davis Instruments.

· Nitrogen Oxides Monitor, Model 8840, Monitor Labs.

· Sulfur Dioxide Monitor, Model 8850, Monitor Labs.

· Ozone Monitor, Model 103-PC, Thermo Environmental Instrument Inc.

· Size-Selective Sequential Daily Air Sampler.

The data collected from these instruments will be logged into a computer equipped with the "Lab View" data acquisition system, which will expedite data handling and transfer. Data also will be downloaded to a laptop computer once every week and backed up to a central server.

Future Activities:

We will continue to advance the objectives of the three projects underway: (1) XRF Instrument Validation and Optimization; (2) Ion Chromatography; and (3) Mobile Air Monitoring.

Supplemental Keywords:

particulate matter, PM, exposure, epidemiology, clinical, animal, toxicology, X-ray fluorescence, XRF, measurement, ion chromatography, IC, mobile air monitoring, tapered element oscillating microbalance, TEOM, aethalometer., RFA, Health, Scientific Discipline, PHYSICAL ASPECTS, Air, ENVIRONMENTAL MANAGEMENT, Air Pollution Monitoring, particulate matter, Environmental Chemistry, Health Risk Assessment, Risk Assessments, mobile sources, Environmental Monitoring, Physical Processes, Atmospheric Sciences, Atmosphere, Risk Assessment, ambient air quality, atmospheric particulate matter, particulates, monitoring, air toxics, atmospheric particles, chemical characteristics, toxicology, ambient air monitoring, acute cardiovascular effects, ion chromatography, airborne particulate matter, ozone, environmental risks, exposure, Sulfur dioxide, air pollution, aerosol composition, atmospheric aerosol particles, human exposure, x-ray fluorescence, ozone monitoring, PM, exposure assessment

Progress and Final Reports:

Original Abstract
  • 1999
  • 2000 Progress Report
  • 2002
  • Final

  • Main Center Abstract and Reports:

    R827351    EPA NYU PM Center: Health Risks of PM Components

    Subprojects under this Center: (EPA does not fund or establish subprojects; EPA awards and manages the overall grant for this center).
    R827351C001 Exposure Characterization Error
    R827351C002 X-ray CT-based Assessment of Variations in Human Airway Geometry: Implications for Evaluation of Particle Deposition and Dose to Different Populations
    R827351C003 Asthma Susceptibility to PM2.5
    R827351C004 Health Effects of Ambient Air PM in Controlled Human Exposures
    R827351C005 Physicochemical Parameters of Combustion Generated Atmospheres as Determinants of PM Toxicity
    R827351C006 Effects of Particle-Associated Irritants on the Cardiovascular System
    R827351C007 Role of PM-Associated Transition Metals in Exacerbating Infectious Pneumoniae in Exposed Rats
    R827351C008 Immunomodulation by PM: Role of Metal Composition and Pulmonary Phagocyte Iron Status
    R827351C009 Health Risks of Particulate Matter Components: Center Service Core
    R827351C010 Lung Hypoxia as Potential Mechanisms for PM-Induced Health Effects
    R827351C011 Urban PM2.5 Surface Chemistry and Interactions with Bronchoalveolar Lavage Fluid (BALF)
    R827351C012 Subchronic PM2.5 Exposure Study at the NYU PM Center
    R827351C013 Long Term Health Effects of Concentrated Ambient PM2.5
    R827351C014 PM Components and NYC Respiratory and Cardiovascular Morbidity
    R827351C015 Development of a Real-Time Monitoring System for Acidity and Soluble Components in Airborne Particulate Matter
    R827351C016 Automated Real-Time Ambient Fine PM Monitoring System