Journal: Analytical Chemistry
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Dry discovery aids airborne experiments
A sampling instrument that allows researchers to get a more accurate fix on the concentration of peroxy radicals in the troposphere could help to enhance our understanding of atmospheric chemistry.
Peroxy radicals are highly reactive, airborne species that play several significant roles in the atmosphere, including degrading volatile organic chemicals and generating ozone. Accurately measuring peroxy radicals is important for understanding atmospheric processes. But the instrument currently used for airborne measurements of peroxy radicals can be adversely affected by moisture levels in the air.
University College Cork researchers have helped develop a way to selectively remove water vapour from air samples for peroxy radical measurements. They have developed an analytical instrument that has an inlet tube made from a selectively porous membrane material called Nafion. The Nafion absorbs moisture from the sample in milliseconds, with only minimal impact on the peroxy radical count. The instrument gave accurate peroxy radical measurements even in humid air, the team showed.
- Analytical Chemistry 90, 3307–3312 (2018). doi: 10.1021/acs.analchem.7b04830