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Atmospheric Measurement Techniques An interactive open-access journal of the European Geosciences Union
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https://doi.org/10.5194/amt-2020-335
© Author(s) 2020. This work is distributed under
the Creative Commons Attribution 4.0 License.
https://doi.org/10.5194/amt-2020-335
© Author(s) 2020. This work is distributed under
the Creative Commons Attribution 4.0 License.

  30 Sep 2020

30 Sep 2020

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This preprint is currently under review for the journal AMT.

Application of chemical derivatization techniques combined with chemical ionization mass spectrometry to detect stabilized Criegee intermediates and peroxy radicals in the gas phase

Alexander Zaytsev1, Martin Breitenlechner1, Anna Novelli2, Hendrik Fuchs2, Daniel A. Knopf3, Jesse H. Kroll4, and Frank N. Keutsch1,5,6 Alexander Zaytsev et al.
  • 1John A. Paulson School of Engineering and Applied Sciences, Harvard University, Cambridge, MA 02138, USA
  • 2Institute of Energy and Climate Research –Troposphere (IEK-8), Forschungszentrum Jülich GmbH, 52428 Jülich, Germany
  • 3School of Marine and Atmospheric Sciences, Stony Brook University, Stony Brook, NY 11794, USA
  • 4Department of Civil and Environmental Engineering, Massachusetts Institute of Technology, Cambridge, MA 02139, USA
  • 5Department of Chemistry and Chemical Biology, Harvard University, Cambridge, MA 02138, USA
  • 6Department of Earth and Planetary Sciences, Harvard University, Cambridge, MA 02138, USA

Abstract. Short-lived highly reactive atmospheric species, such as organic peroxy radicals (RO2) and stabilized Criegee intermediates (SCIs), play an important role in controlling the oxidative removal and transformation of many natural and anthropogenic trace gases in the atmosphere. Direct speciated measurements of these components are extremely helpful for understanding their atmospheric fate and impact. We describe the development of an online method for measurements of SCIs and RO2 in laboratory experiments using chemical derivatization and spin trapping techniques combined with H3O+ and NH4+ chemical ionization mass spectrometry (CIMS). Using chemical derivatization agents with low proton affinity, such as electron-poor carbonyls, we scavenge all SCIs produced from a wide range of alkenes without depleting CIMS reagent ions. Comparison between our measurements and results from numeric modelling, using a modified version of the Master Chemical Mechanism, shows that the method can be used for quantification of SCIs in laboratory experiments with detection limit of 1.4 × 107 molecule cm-3 for 30 s integration time with the instrumentation used in this study. We show that spin traps are highly reactive towards atmospheric radicals and form stable adducts with them by studying the gas-phase kinetics of their reaction with hydroxyl radical (OH). We also demonstrate that spin trap adducts with SCIs and RO2 can be simultaneously probed and quantified under laboratory conditions with detection limit of 1.6 × 108 molecule cm-3 for 30  s integration time for RO2 species with the instrumentation used in this study. Spin trapping prevents radical secondary reactions and cycling, which ensures that measurements are not biased by chemical interferences, and can be implemented for detecting RO2 species in the ambient atmosphere.

Alexander Zaytsev et al.

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Alexander Zaytsev et al.

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Short summary
We have developed an online method for speciated measurements of organic peroxy radicals and stabilized Criegee intermediates using chemical derivatization combined with chemical ionization mass spectrometry. Chemical derivatization prevents secondary radical reactions and eliminates potential interferences. Comparison between our measurements and results from numeric modelling shows that the method can be used for quantification of a wide range of atmospheric radicals and intermediates.
We have developed an online method for speciated measurements of organic peroxy radicals and...
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