The quality of indoor environments has a significant impact on public health. Usually, an indoor environment is treated as a static box, in which physicochemical reactions of indoor air contaminants are negligible. This results in conservative estimates for primary indoor air pollutant concentrations, while also ignoring secondary pollutants. Thus, understanding the relationship between indoor and outdoor particles and particle-bound pollutants is of great significance. For this reason, we collected simultaneous indoor and outdoor measurements of the size distribution of airborne brominated flame retardant (BFR) congeners. The time-dependent concentrations of indoor particles and particle-bound BFRs were then estimated with the mass balance model, accounting for the outdoor concentration, indoor source strength, infiltration, penetration, deposition and indoor resuspension. Based on qualitative observation, the size distributions of ΣPBDE and ΣHBCD were characterized by bimodal peaks. According to our results, particle-bound BDE209 and γ-HBCD underwent degradation. Regardless of the surface adsorption capability of particles and the physicochemical properties of the target compounds, the concentration of BFRs in particles of different size fractions seemed to be governed by the particle distribution. Based on our estimations, for airborne particles and particle-bound BFRs, a window-open ventilated room only takes a quarter of the time to reach an equilibrium between the concentration of pollutants inside and outside compared to a closed room. Unfortunately, indoor pollutants and outdoor pollutants always exist simultaneously, which poses a window-open-or-closed dilemma to achieve proper ventilation.
Environmental Pollution – Elsevier
Published: Feb 1, 2018
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