Climate Impact of Advanced Emission Control Technologies

EPA Grant Number: FP917511
Title: Climate Impact of Advanced Emission Control Technologies
Investigators: Vu, Diep N
Institution: University of California - Riverside
EPA Project Officer: Michaud, Jayne
Project Period: September 1, 2012 through August 31, 2015
Project Amount: $126,000
RFA: STAR Graduate Fellowships (2012) RFA Text |  Recipients Lists
Research Category: Academic Fellowships , Fellowship - Chemical Engineering


ECS technologies are used widely and globally to mitigate air pollution. Certain types of ECS technologies such as DPFs, however, may generate new particles of different chemical and physical composition from the original emissions source during the filtering and regeneration process. Previous research has shown that, although DPFs can reduce mass emissions rates, they can enhance the formation of ultrafine semi-volatile particles during regeneration and pass through the filter. These particles potentially may act as precursors to secondary organic aerosol (SOA) and other photochemical pollutants. This research will measure and quantify the chemical activity and physical properties of these emissions.


Because the chemical composition and the physical properties of emissions downstream of ECS technologies are highly dependent on control technology types and fuels, the emissions will be characterized from different sources. Measurements for particle and vapor phase (e.g., size distribution and composition) will be collected and supported by instrumentation provided at the UC Riverside Center for Environmental Research and Technology. Instrumentation will include both online and offline measurements. In addition, fresh aerosol will be aged and evaluated in atmospheric processes chamber studies to assess downwind effects, such as atmospheric interactions and transformations, of the particles in the atmosphere to assess their potential at SOA precursors.

Expected Results:

Emissions are expected to be highly dependent on the type of control technology and fuel. Recent research has been limited to few types of DPFs. This research will be extended to different types of technologies but with an emphasis on the chemical activity of these particles in the atmosphere. Through atmospheric aging, these particles can undergo various physical and chemical interactions that may cause changes in particle size and composition. This will provide insight on the impact of these technologies for air quality, the environment and climate.

Potential to Further Environmental/Human Health Protection

This proposed study allows for the opportunity to measure and quantify the chemical activity of these emissions in the atmosphere. It will provide a foundation to better assess the risks of exposure to human and environmental health, aid in the design of more effective emission control technologies, and allow for effective formation and/or revision of air quality regulations that protect the health of the population and environment.

Progress and Final Reports:

  • 2013
  • 2014
  • Final