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Assessment of Air Quality Impacts from the 2013 Rim Fire
Woody, M. AND K. Baker. Assessment of Air Quality Impacts from the 2013 Rim Fire. 2016 CMAS Conference, Chapel Hill, NC, October 24 - 26, 2016.
The National Exposure Research Laboratory (NERL) Computational Exposure Division (CED) develops and evaluates data, decision-support tools, and models to be applied to media-specific or receptor-specific problem areas. CED uses modeling-based approaches to characterize exposures, evaluate fate and transport, and support environmental diagnostics/forensics with input from multiple data sources. It also develops media- and receptor-specific models, process models, and decision support tools for use both within and outside of EPA.
Wildfires account for a significant fraction of PM2.5 emissions in the U.S., the majority of which are organic aerosols. This work aims to quantify modeled impacts of wildfires, specifically the 2013 Rim Fire, and focuses on how recent organic aerosol updates in CMAQ v5.2 effect biomass burning organic aerosol predictions (i.e. non-volatile vs. semi-volatile primary organic aerosol emissions). We also leverage instrumented field campaigns collected on-board mobile platforms (SEAC4RS, AJAX) and traditional ground-based measurements collected at routine monitors to evaluate model performance during this event. Finally, sensitivity analysis is performed to examine what further model updates/research are needed to more accurately model the impacts from biomass burning events (e.g. volatility distribution of biomass burning primary organic aerosols, biomass burning specific organic aerosol aging).