Untersuchung und Modellierung der raumzeitlichen Variabilität urbaner und regionaler Feinstaubkonzentrationen

  • Investigation and modelling of the spatio-temporal variability of urban and regional particulate matter concentrations

Merbitz, Hendrik; Schneider, Christoph (Thesis advisor)

Aachen : Publikationsserver der RWTH Aachen University (2013)
Dissertation / PhD Thesis

Aachen, Techn. Hochsch., Diss., 2013


The doctoral thesis pursues the objective of an improvement of the state of knowledge concerning the spatio-temporal distribution of particulate matter (PM) concentrations by means of small-scale mobile measurements and various analyzes. Furthermore, the development of modelling approaches for the prediction of urban and regional particulate matter levels is discussed. In this connection, the spatial patterns of urban particulate matter concentrations (PM10, PM2.5) and their influences are focused on. In addition, the impact of meteorological factors on the temporal variability of urban PM10 concentrations is investigated. Besides the urban particulate matter distribution, the regional PM10 variability as a function of emissions and land use is addressed. The findings form the basis for the development of several statistical and geo-statistical approaches for the spatial and temporal modelling of PM levels. The results of the mobile measurements show a high small-scale variability of urban PM concentrations. The level of concentrations is mainly dependent on the traffic intensity, the small-scale ventilation conditions and the occurrence of vegetation. On the basis of the small-scale measurements the development of a regression model is conducted, which derives the spatial PM10 and PM2.5 distributions within the city of Aachen at a high spatial resolution. As predictors, the regression model takes into account traffic-related emissions as well as the impact of buildings on dispersion conditions and the removal of particles by vegetation. The validation of the model shows a high level of agreement between measured and modelled PM concentrations. On the basis of the model results the population exposure against PM10 and PM2.5 is estimated for the city area of Aachen. Based on analyzes of meteorological influences on the temporal variability of urban and suburban PM concentrations, different linear and non-linear models are developed for the prediction of PM10 levels at two sites with different pollution levels. Additionally, for the regional area of investigation, the Euregio Maas-Rhine, an interpolation model is developed, which takes into account local influences on air quality such as emissions and land cover and furthermore reproduces regional concentration gradients. The interpolation model creates maps of the current distribution of PM10 concentrations in the Euregio Maas-Rhine showing a high level of agreement with measured concentrations. The thesis is completed with a discussion of measures improving urban air quality. Besides the reduction of traffic-related emissions, especially the advancement of ventilation and supply of clean air as well as the planting of suitable vegetation are emphasized as effective measures towards a reduction of urban particulate air pollution.