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  • The European harmonisation programme on the revised reference method for suspended particulates, the monitoring network design and prospectives


Two aspects of the harmonisation programme undertaken by the EC Commission are presented. The first is related to the design of a reference method for suspended particulate matter; the purpose was to sample inhalable and thoracic fractions (as normalised by ISO) at +/- 10% in various meteorological conditions. A prototype, developed by the Commission, has been compared to the German KFG and the American PM 10 in 4 different sites and a wind tunnel. The results show that the inhalable fractions compared with a cascade impactor were similar within a range of +/- 10%, but the thoracic fractions (below 10 micron size) were rather variable, partly due to the wind speed, and required further investigation. In the second aspect of the EC programme, on monitoring network design, procedures recommended by the Commission are presented. Examples of air quality surveys in the greater Madrid area, performed in 1990-1991 by a specially equipped multipollutant mobile unit and (for NO(2)) by a passive sampling method (diffusion tubes), are reported. Distribution maps of pollutant concentrations have been plotted and, for NO(2) surveys, the values have been compared to the limit value of the Directive, reported to the 99th percentile for mobile laboratory measurements and to the annual limit value for diffusion tubes measurements. Results show the strong probability, for a 8/10 day pollution episode, of exceeding the Directive's limit on sites close to heavy traffic. When considering annual means, 11 sites subject to heavy urban pollution approached the limit value of 80 micrograms NO(2)/m3.

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Authors: PAYRISSAT M, CEC Bruxelles (BE);SANDRONI S, CEC Bruxelles (BE);HECQ P, CEC Bruxelles (BE)
Bibliographic Reference: Article: Pollution Atmosphérique, Vol. 131 (1991) pp. 404-417
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