The potential relation between outdoor pollutants and the quality of indoor air was evaluated. A case study was carried out in the small town of Zyrardow situated south-west of Warsaw, Poland. The indoor dust from 20 apartments from several parts of the town that are anticipated to be exposed to various levels of pollution was investigated: a mildly polluted area (suburban), a heating plant area, a post-industrial area and the city center. For evaluation of indoor dust several magnetic parameters (mass-specific magnetic susceptibility χ, its temperature dependence, anhysteretic remanent magnetization, hysteresis loop parameters) were applied. Analysis of magnetic properties was supplemented by analysis of chemical elements: Cd, Cu, Co, Cr, Fe, Mn, Ni, Pb and Zn. Depending on the location of apartments, large variations in concentration, mineralogy and grain-size of magnetic particles were detected. The thermomagnetic analysis revealed magnetite as a primary magnetic phase. In indoor dust, the Curie temperature of ~760°C and soft hysteresis loops with relatively low coercivity values of ~1.5-5 mT are an attribute of metallic iron. The dust collected from apartments located near the local heating plant area, in contaminated post-industrial and suburban areas contains mainly magnetite and only a small amount of metallic iron. Mass-specific magnetic susceptibility is in the range from 40 to 200 × 10-8 m3kg-1 and linearly correlates with concentration of individual heavy metals: Ni, Cr, Co and Zn. Magnetic fraction of dust from the city center mainly consists of magnetite and variable amounts of metallic iron. Magnetic susceptibility shows linear correlations with concentration of Fe and concentration of individual heavy metals (Zn, Ni and Co) considered as traffic-related. The study demonstrates that metallic iron present in indoor dust is a potential marker of trafficrelated sources and it makes it possible to use magnetic methods as a tool for evaluation of traffic-related impact on indoor air levels.
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Szczepaniak-Wnuk, I., Górka-Kostrubiec, B. Magnetic particles in indoor dust as marker of pollution emitted by different outside sources. Stud Geophys Geod 60, 297–315 (2016). https://doi.org/10.1007/s11200-015-1238-6