Exposure to Ultrafine Particles in Urban Centres

  • Kelly SabaliauskasEmail author
  • Greg Evans
Part of the Environmental Science and Engineering book series (ESE)


Ultrafine particles (UFP: particles with diameters less than 100 nm) can originate from anthropogenic sources such as fossil fuel combustion, or naturally through nucleation of sulphuric acid, water and ammonia molecules. These particles can be further transformed through condensation, evaporation and coagulation processes that affect their number, size and composition. The properties of UFP from vehicle emissions depend on the vehicle fleet, fuel and lubricating oil characteristics, and engine operating conditions. UFP exhibit significant spatiotemporal variability depending on traffic density and day-to-day meteorology. Outdoor UFP exposure is directly related to proximity to traffic. Indoor exposure is related to the ventilation characteristics of the building and lifestyle choices such as cooking, burning candles and using cleaning products. The amount of time an individual spends indoors depends on age, gender, life-stage and socioeconomic status. Due to the numerous sources, UFP exposure assessment is strongly dependent on the reliability of time-activity relationships.


Ultrafine Particle Particle Number Concentration Indoor Source Burning Candle High Traffic Road 
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Copyright information

© Springer-Verlag Berlin Heidelberg 2010

Authors and Affiliations

  1. 1.Southern Ontario Centre for Atmospheric Aerosol ResearchUniversity of TorontoTorontoCanada

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