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New particle formation found to occur in heavily polluted air

An international team of researchers has found that new particle formation (NPF) can occur in the atmosphere even in heavily polluted air. In their paper published in the journal Science, the group describes air quality testing they did in China over a period of years and what they found.  NPF occurs in the atmosphere when certain ingredients clump together spontaneously, causing the formation of new particles. Prior research has suggested that NPF only occurs in relatively pristine air, because particles in polluted air tend to scavenge precursors. In this new effort, the research team has found evidence indicating such conclusions are wrong—they have found evidence of NPF occurring in a heavily populated and polluted part of China.  Read more...


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