Articles | Volume 4, issue 6
Research article
29 Jun 2011
Research article |  | 29 Jun 2011

Design and performance of a three-wavelength LED-based total scatter and backscatter integrating nephelometer

T. Müller, M. Laborde, G. Kassell, and A. Wiedensohler

Abstract. Integrating nephelometers are instruments that directly measure a value close to the light scattering coefficient of airborne particles. Different models of nephelometers have been used for decades for monitoring and research applications. Now, a series of nephelometers (Ecotech models M9003, Aurora 1000 and Aurora 3000) with newly designed light sources based on light emitting diodes are available. This article reports on the design of these integrating nephelometers and a comparison of the Aurora 3000 to another commercial instrument (TSI model 3563) that uses an incandescent lamp. Both instruments are three-wavelength, total and backscatter integrating nephelometers.

We present a characterization of the new light source design of the Aurora 3000 and provide parameterizations for its angular sensitivity functions. These parameterizations facilitate to correct for measurement artefacts using Mie-theory. Furthermore, correction factors are provided as a function of the Ångström exponent. Comparison measurements against the TSI 3563 with laboratory generated white particles and ambient air are also shown and discussed. Both instruments agree well within the calibration uncertainties and detection limit for total scattering with differences less than 5 %. Differences for backscattering are higher by up to 11 %. Highest differences were found for the longest wavelengths, where the signal to noise ratio is lowest. Differences at the blue and green wavelengths are less than 4 % and 3 %, respectively, for both total and backscattering.