ON EAST ASIAN SAND AND DUSTSTORMS AND ASSOCIATED SIGNIFICANT DUSTFALL OBSERVED FROM JANUARY TO MAY 2001


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Abstract

Monitoring of dust pollution at the western shore of Tae-ahn Peninsula (TAP) and in the Chongju area of central Korea was carried out from January to May 2001. It was found that in Korea there were 9 cases of sand and duststorms (DS) and 16 associated significant dustfall (SD) days. Observed maximum concentrations of DS and SD coming from NW China and Mongolia were in the range of 300–920 for TSP, 200–690 for PM10 and 100–170 μg m−3 for PM2.5. Satellite measurements clearly showed the formation and subsequent movement of DS to the Korean Peninsula and onward to the Korea East Sea, Japan and the Gulf of Alaska. According to satellite image analysis of dust clouds there were abundant coarse particles, measuring in size of 11.0 μm. Medium-sized particles measuring in the range of 3.5–7.0 were also prevalent, while fine particles of less than 2.0 μm were less distinctive in reflectivity. Measured values of PM2.5 were also relatively low with SD events. The measured average pH values of dusty precipitation associated with DS were 7.24. Alkaline precipitation can play a ‘temporary’ role in the neutralization of acidified soil until the subsequent event of acidic rain. The new selection criteria of SD days from PM2.5 at 85 μg m−3, PM10190 μg m−3 and TSP 250 μg m−3 are recommended on dust pollution occurring from the invasion of a DS elsewhere.

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