Synthesis Topics

Synthesis of Airport Related Ultrafine Particle (UFP) Emissions Research

In recent years, there has been an a growing concern regarding emissions of aviation related ultrafine particles (UFPs). This effort would consolidate relevant research regarding aviation and UFP emissions in order to provide useful insight to airports, stakeholders, and the public.

Background (Describe the current situation or problem in the industry, and how your idea would address it.)

UFPs are particulate matter (PM) with diameters less than 0.1 microns and are emitted in high quantities from aircraft engine exhaust. There have been several research efforts aimed at understanding airport contributions to UFP emissions, and how they disperse to the surrounding environment and communities. Often, these research efforts are complicated by the fact UFPs are also heavily emitted from on-road motor vehicles making it difficult to apportion UFP emissions to specific sources. However, recent research is beginning to distinguish between variations of UFP sizes between aviation related sources of UFPs compared to motor vehicle related and other emission sources of UFPs. Additionally, new research is providing insight into the health impacts of UFPs that is of interest as well.

Objective (What is the desired product or result that will help the airport industry?)

Particularly, as public awareness of UFPs and associated health concern increases, this synthesis would be a useful tool to present a state of the science on the topic. In this way, airports, stakeholders, and the public will have a shared knowledge of the facts and be able to have useful discussions on the topic in order to best reduce emissions and impacts of UFPs.

Approach (Describe in general terms the steps you think are needed to achieve the objective.)

The general approach to this synthesis is envisioned as follows:

  1. A review of studies on UFP research in general, to provide insight to their health impacts, atmospheric behavior, etc.

  2. A more focused literature review on UFPs associated with airports to provide an understanding of aviation sources specifically and their potential impacts on surrounding areas.

  3. Review of available data from monitoring efforts.

  4. Using information from steps 1 to 3 to summarize gaps in the current state of the science.

  5. Develop a roadmap for airports to apply towards addressing UFP related emissions and developing useful methods for public engagement on the topic.

Related Research - List related ACRP and other industry research; describe gaps (see link to Research Roadmaps above), and describe how your idea would address these gaps. This is a critical element of a synthesis topic submission.

ACRP Research Report 179: Dispersion Modeling Guidance for Airports Addressing Local Air Quality Health Concerns - currently, U.S. regulatory models do not include UFPs, but future models may. Additionally, the authors include UFP studies as part of their suggested future research.

ACRP Web-Only Document 45 Airport Environmental Research Roadmap: Lists UFP synthesis effort as a suggested research idea as airports will need to understand this developing environmental and air quality concern.



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Idea No. 552