Modelling of Quartz-Enhanced Photoacoustic Spectroscopy for Black Carbon Detection

Black carbon (BC), formed from incomplete combustion of fossil fuels and biomass, is a primary air pollutant and the second largest contributor to global warming. In addition, it has been identified as the cause of a host human diseases such as cancer, respiratory diseases and cardiovascular dysfunctions. Photoacoustic spectroscopy (PAS) is highlighted as an established, industry-standard technique for measuring black carbon concentrations, however the prohibitively high price range and bulky sizes of PAS instruments have so far restricted their usage to laboratory research. This study investigates the modelling of quartz-enhanced photoacoustic spectroscopy (QEPAS), an improvement on conventional PAS that employs a quartz tuning fork crystal as a sharply resonant pressure transducer. Since its advent in 2002, QEPAS has been successfully applied in a vast number of gas detection studies to achieve record detection limits, but a detailed investigation for aerosol measurements has not yet been conducted. Here we present an extension of a QEPAS model provided by Petra (2012) [i] and combine it with aerosol absorption theory to report the first results for detection of black carbon particles.

Join today to view and download the full abstract/presentation