Journal of Atmospheric Chemistry

, Volume 66, Issue 1–2, pp 11–26 | Cite as

Characterization of atmospheric surfactants in the bulk precipitation by electrochemical tools

  • Palma Orlović-Leko
  • Zlatica Kozarac
  • Božena Ćosović
  • Slađana Strmečki
  • Marta Plavšić


Characterization of atmospheric surfactants in bulk precipitations was carried out by adsorption study at the mercury electrode/solution interface using phase sensitive AC voltammetry. The structure and permeability of the adsorbed organic films at the mercury electrode was tested using the redox processes of lead and cadmium ions as electrochemical tools. The effects of organic matter from the bulk precipitations (rainwater and melted snow) were compared to those obtained for aqueous solutions of model substances: aromatic hydrocarbon (naphtalene), anionic surfactant (sodium dodecylbenzene sulfonate, NDBS), protein (albumine) and selected model substances suggested to be representative of water soluble organic compounds (WSOC) in atmospheric water (monocarboxylic, dicarboxylic, and polyacidic compounds and levoglucosan). It was found that substances like humic acid and 3-hydroxybutanoic acid may play an important role in atmospheric heterogeneous chemistry because of their surface active potential.


AC voltammetry Bulk precipitation Organic films Electrochemical tool 



Financial support of the Ministry of Science, Education and Sports of Republic of Croatia for the project « Nature of organic matter, interaction with traces and surfaces in environment » is gratefully acknowledged.

We thank the referees and the Editor for their efforts and help to improve the paper.


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Copyright information

© Springer Science+Business Media B.V. 2011

Authors and Affiliations

  • Palma Orlović-Leko
    • 1
  • Zlatica Kozarac
    • 2
  • Božena Ćosović
    • 2
  • Slađana Strmečki
    • 2
  • Marta Plavšić
    • 2
  1. 1.Mining, Geology and Petroleum Engineering DepartmentUniversity of ZagrebZagrebCroatia
  2. 2.Ruđer Bošković Institute, Centre for Marine and Environmental ResearchZagrebCroatia

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