Development of Portable Aerosol Mobility Spectrometer for Personal and Mobile Aerosol Measurement
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Development of Portable Aerosol Mobility Spectrometer for Personal and Mobile Aerosol Measurement

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  • Alternative Title:
    Aerosol Sci Technol
  • Description:
    We describe development of a Portable Aerosol Mobility Spectrometer (PAMS) for size distribution measurement of submicrometer aerosol. The spectrometer is designed for use in personal or mobile aerosol characterization studies and measures approximately 22.5 × 22.5 × 15 cm and weighs about 4.5 kg including the battery. PAMS uses electrical mobility technique to measure number-weighted particle size distribution of aerosol in the 10-855 nm range. Aerosol particles are electrically charged using a dual-corona bipolar corona charger, followed by classification in a cylindrical miniature differential mobility analyzer. A condensation particle counter is used to detect and count particles. The mobility classifier was operated at an aerosol flow rate of 0.05 L/min, and at two different user-selectable sheath flows of 0.2 L/min (for wider size range 15-855 nm) and 0.4 L/min (for higher size resolution over the size range of 10.6-436 nm). The instrument was operated in voltage stepping mode to retrieve the size distribution, which took approximately 1-2 minutes, depending on the configuration. Sizing accuracy and resolution were probed and found to be within the 25% limit of NIOSH criterion for direct-reading instruments (NIOSH 2012). Comparison of size distribution measurements from PAMS and other commercial mobility spectrometers showed good agreement. The instrument offers unique measurement capability for on-person or mobile size distribution measurements of ultrafine and nanoparticle aerosol.
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