Particulate Monitoring Service
Particles in the atmosphere consist of either solid or fine liquid droplets. They include,smoke, fumes, dust, flyash,condensed vapours and pollen. Suspended particulates in ambient air serve as a vehicle for organic and inorganic chemical compounds. Unlike gaseous pollutants particulate matter (PM) can be a mixture of different sizes and chemical composition with varying health implications. It can be strongly affected by complex secondary interaction involving temperature, humidity, sunshine , gases and particulate composition.
Particles in the atmosphere are characterized according to size. (Figure 1). Particulates can be divided into four major categories. Settleable particulates (Dustfall), Total Suspended particulates (TSP), Inhalable Particulate (PM10), Respirable Particulate (PM2.5). Larger particulates such as Dustfall are more a soiling or aesthetics problem than health related. Particulate less than PM2.5 micron are related to health problems. Particulates less than 100 micron are usually present in the ambient air.
Air monitoring networks for particulates can be used to assess health impacts for protection of human health, to observe trends in support of abatement programs and assist in identifying potential sources.