Water, Air, and Soil Pollution

, Volume 68, Issue 1–2, pp 113–123 | Cite as

Phenols and nitrophenols as tropospheric pollutants: Emissions from automobile exhausts and phase transfer in the atmosphere

  • J. Tremp
  • P. Mattrel
  • S. Fingler
  • W. Giger


Motor exhaust gas from an automobile motor, operated under stationary conditions with unleaded gasoline, was sampled with two different impinger bath methods. The samples were analyzed by gas chromatography/mass spectrometry (GC/MS) for phenol, cresols and nitrated phenols. Phenol and cresols were measured in the range of 80–220 nmol/L of exhaust gas from a noncatalyst engine, and nitrated phenols were found in the range of 9–36 nmol/L. A large reduction of total phenols down to 7% and less was observed when the engine was operated with a regulated three-way catalytic converter. The result of this study shows that exhaust gas sampling of phenols with alkaline aqueous impinger solutions leads to an underestimation of phenol emissions, since phenols are not stable under high-pH conditions.

In order to better assess the environmental fate of nitrated phenols, laboratory experiments were conducted to measure the Henry's law constants of a series of nitrated phenols. For that purpose an apparatus for dynamic determination of the Henry's law constants was constructed and successfully used. Special emphasis was put on temperature dependence of the Henry's law constants.


Cresol Catalytic Converter Automobile Exhaust Unleaded Gasoline Impinger Solution 
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Copyright information

© Kluwer Academic Publishers 1993

Authors and Affiliations

  • J. Tremp
    • 1
  • P. Mattrel
    • 1
  • S. Fingler
    • 1
  • W. Giger
    • 1
  1. 1.Swiss Federal Institute for Water Resources and Water Pollution ControlEAWAGDübendorfSwitzerland

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