Experimental and numerical analyses of particulate matter concentrations in underground subway station

Original Paper


The purpose of this paper was to perform the experimental and numerical analyses of PM10 and PM2.5 concentrations in Imam Khomeini (IKH) underground subway station in Tehran. The aim was to provide fundamental data in order to fulfill workers and passengers respiratory health necessities. Experimental measurements was done at three different locations (entrance, middle and exit) inside the platform and also outdoor ambient of the station. The Dust-Trak was applied to measure continuous PM2.5 and PM10 concentrations at a logging interval of 30 s. The measurements were recorded during rush hours (8:00 am–12:00 pm) for one week per each season from June 2015–June 2016.Moreover, computational fluid dynamic (CFD) simulation was done for the platform of the above station and the necessary boundary conditions were provided through field measurements. Those basic parameters which were considered for numerical analysis of particulate matters concentrations included air velocity, air pressure and turbulence. Furthermore, the piston effect caused by train movement inside the station provided natural ventilation in the platform. The results showed that seasonal measured PM2.5 and PM10 indoor concentrations had a variety range from 40–98 µg/m3 to 33–102 µg/m3, respectively, and were much higher than national indoor air quality standard levels. Meanwhile, PM2.5 and PM10 concentrations in the IKH underground subway station were approximately 2.5–2.9 times higher than those in outdoor ambient, respectively. Numerical simulation indicated that the predicted concentrations were underestimated by a factor of 8% in comparison with the measured ones.


Experimental measurement Numerical analysis Particulate matters Underground subway station 



The authors would like to acknowledge the close cooperation of Mr. Moshrefi for his constructive advices regarding the simulation work and the supports of Mr. Tavasoli and Mr. Moradm and during the field measurements and also Mr. Raie, Mr. Rohani and Mr. Hedayati affiliated to Tehran Metro Public Relation, for their assistance in providing the required data and information regarding IKH underground subway station.

Compliance with ethical standards

Conflict of interest

The corresponding author, on behalf of all co-authors, declares that the presented work has no conflicts of interests that are directly or indirectly related to it.


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Copyright information

© Islamic Azad University (IAU) 2017

Authors and Affiliations

  • A. Bolourchi
    • 1
  • F. Atabi
    • 1
  • F. Moattar
    • 1
  • M. A. Ehyaei
    • 2
  1. 1.Department of Environmental Engineering, Science and Research BranchIslamic Azad UniversityTehranIran
  2. 2.Department of Mechanical EngineeringPardis Branch, Islamic Azad UniversityPardis New CityIran

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