Increase of the Environmental Pt Concentration in the Metropolitan Area of Mexico City Associated to the Use of Automobile Catalytic Converters

  • Ofelia Morton-BermeaEmail author
  • Elizabeth Hernández-Álvarez
  • Sara Ordóñez-Godínez
  • Laura E. Beramendi-Orosco
  • Josué Vega-Rodríguez
  • Omar Amador-Muñoz
Part of the Environmental Science and Engineering book series (ESE)


This work shows the results of de investigations concerning Pt concentration in the environment of Mexico City, product of the impact of the use of catalytic converters in the urban area. This research was carried out by assessing Pt concentration in dust samples and PM2.5 collected in the metropolitan area of Mexico City. Dust samples were divided in “road dust” and “urban dust” according to vehicle traffic exposure. Pt concentration in road dust samples, exposed to high traffic density, range from 37.7 to 231 µg kg−1 (mean 112 µg kg−1), whereas Pt concentration found in urban dust, collected in areas with low traffic density, varied between 26.4 and 86.6 µg kg−1 (mean 57 µg kg−1). PM2.5 samples were collected in five sites of the urban area during three different seasons (dry-warm, rainy, dry-cold). Results do not show significant spatial or temporal variation. Pt concentration ranges from 1 to 79 pg m−3. The comparison of Pt concentration in dust and PM2.5 samples presented here, with data reported for other urban areas, as well as with data previously reported for PM10 collected in 1991 and 2003 for the metropolitan area of Mexico City, allows to conclude a significant increase of Pt in this urban environment.


Mexico City Dust Sample Road Dust Catalytic Converter Airborne Particulate Matter 
These keywords were added by machine and not by the authors. This process is experimental and the keywords may be updated as the learning algorithm improves.



This study was performed with financial support from DGAPA (Dirección General de Personal Académico, UNAM) project IN101612 and CONACyT (Consejo Nacional de Ciencia y Tecnología) Project 166295.


  1. Bocca B, Caimi S, Smichowski P, Gomez D, Caroli S (2006) Monitoring Pt and Rh in urban aerosols from Buenos Aires, Argentina. Sci Total Environ 358:255–264CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  2. Federal Register (1987) 40 CFR Appendix J to Part 50—Reference method for the determination of particulate matter as PM10 in the atmosphereGoogle Scholar
  3. Gomez B, Gomez M, Sanchez JL, Fernandez R, Palacios MA (2001) Platinum and rhodium distribution in airborne particulate matter and road dust. Sci Total Environ 269:131–144CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  4. Gomez B, Palacios MA, Gomez M, Sanchez JL, Morrison G, Rauch S, McLeod C, Ma R, Caroli S, Alimonti A, Petrucci F, Bocca B, Schramel P, Zischka M, Petterson C, Wass U (2002) Levels and risk assessment for humans and ecosystems of platinum-group elements in the airborne particles and road dust of some European cities. Sci Total Environ 299:1–19CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  5. INEGI Instituto Nacional de Estadística y Geografía (2011) Cuaderno Estadístico de la Zona Metropolitana del Valle de México. Accessed Nov 2013
  6. Kan SF, Tanner PA (2004) Determination of platinum in roadside dust samples by dynamic reaction cell-inductively coupled plasma-mass spectrometry. J Anal At Spectrom 19:639–643CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  7. Kanitsar K, Koellensperger G, Hann S, Limbeck A, Puxbaum H, Stingeder G (2003) Determination of Pt, Pd and Rh by inductively coupled plasma sector field mass spectrometry (ICP-SFMS) in size-classified urban aerosol samples. J Anal At Spectrom 18:239–246CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  8. Laschober Ch, Limbeck A, Renl J, Puxbaum H (2004) Particulate emissions from on-road vehicles in the Kaisermühlen-tunnel (Vienna, Austria). Atmo Environ 38:2187–2195CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  9. Limbeck A, Puls C, Handler M (2007) Platinum and Palladium emissions from on-road vehicles in the Kaisermühlen tunnel (Vienna, Austria). Environ Sci Technol 41:4938–4945CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  10. Morton O, Puchelt H, Hernández E, Lounejeva E (2001) Traffic-related platinum group elements (PGE) in soils from Mexico City. J Geochem Explor 72:223–227CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  11. Morton-Bermea O, Amador-Muñoz O, Martínez-Trejo L, Hernández-Álvarez E, Beramendi-Orosco L, García-Arreola ME (2014) Platinum in PM2.5 of the metropolitan area of Mexico City. Environ Geochem Health. doi: 10.1007/s10653-014-9613-8
  12. Pan S, Sun Y, Zhang G, Chakraborty P (2013) Spatial distributions and characteristics of platinum group elements (PGEs) in urban dusts from China and India. J Geochem Explor 128:153–157CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  13. Pope CA, Burnett RT, Thun MD, Calle EE, Krewski D, Ito K, Thurston GD (2002) Lung cancer, cardiopulmonary mortality, and long-term exposure to fine particulate air pollution. J Am Med Assoc 287:1132–1141CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  14. Qi L, Zhou MF, Zhao Z, Hu J, Huang Y (2011) The characteristics of automobile catalyst-derived platinum group elements in road dusts and roadside soils: a case study in the Pearl River Delta region, South China. Environ Earth Sci 64:1683–1692CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  15. Rauch S, Lu M, Morrison G (2001) Heterogeneity of platinum group metals in airborne particles. Environ Sci Technol 35:595–599CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  16. Rauch S, Peucker-Ehrenbrink B, Molina LT, Molina MJ, Ramos R, Hemond H (2006) Platinumgroup elements in airborne particles in Mexico City. Environ Sci and Technol 40:7554–7560CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  17. Spada N, Bozlaker A, Chellam S (2012) Multi-elemental characterization of tunnel and road dusts in Houston, Texas using dynamic reaction cell-quadrupole-inductively coupled plasma–mass spectrometry: evidence for the release of platinum group and anthropogenic metals from motor vehicles. Anal Chim Acta 735:1–8CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  18. Wang J, Zhu RH, Shi YZ (2007) Distribution of platinum group elements in road dust in the Beijing metropolitan area, China. J Environ Sci 19:29–34Google Scholar
  19. Zereini F, Alt F, Messerschmidt J, von Bohlen A, Liebl K, Püttmann W (2004) Concentration and distribution of Platinum group elements (Pt, Pd, Rh) in airborne particulate matter in Frankfurt am Main, Germany. Environ Sci Technol 38:1686–1692CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  20. Zereini F, Alsenz H, Wiseman CLS, Püttmann W, Reimer E, Schleyer R, Bieber E, Wallasch M (2012) Platinum group elements (Pt, Pd, Rh) in airborne particulate matter in rural vs. urban areas of Germany: concentrations and spatial patterns of distribution. Sci Total Environ 416:261–268CrossRefGoogle Scholar

Copyright information

© Springer-Verlag Berlin Heidelberg 2015

Authors and Affiliations

  • Ofelia Morton-Bermea
    • 1
    Email author
  • Elizabeth Hernández-Álvarez
    • 1
  • Sara Ordóñez-Godínez
    • 1
  • Laura E. Beramendi-Orosco
    • 2
  • Josué Vega-Rodríguez
    • 1
  • Omar Amador-Muñoz
    • 3
  1. 1.Instituto de GeofísicaUniversidad Nacional Autónoma de MéxicoMexico CityMexico
  2. 2.Instituto de GeologíaUniversidad Nacional Autónoma de MéxicoMexico CityMexico
  3. 3.Centro de Ciencias de la AtmósferaUniversidad Nacional Autónoma de MéxicoMexico CityMexico

Personalised recommendations