Anomalous Features of Black Carbon and Particulate Matter Observed Over Rural Station During Diwali Festival of 2015

  • P. C. S. DevaraEmail author
  • M. P. Alam
  • U. C. Dumka
  • S. Tiwari
  • A. K. Srivastava
Conference paper
Part of the Water Science and Technology Library book series (WSTL, volume 77)


Black carbon (BC) aerosol is the second most powerful climate forcing agent, ahead of methane, and second only to carbon dioxide, formed through the incomplete combustion of fossil fuels, bio-fuel and biomass, and is emitted in both anthropogenic and naturally occurring soot. In this communication, we present some interesting results of BC, particulate matter (PM), in conjunction with concurrent satellite and surface meteorological products, obtained during the recent Diwali festival episode of November 2015 over a rural station characterized by sparse population and complex terrain. This comprehensive study revealed (i) a clear diurnal variation of BC, PM1, PM2.5, and PM10 mass concentration with dual maxima (bimodal), one around early morning and the other around mid-night hours, due to emissions from traffic with minimum concentration around afternoon hours due to well-known planetary boundary-layer dynamics, (ii) the PM showed higher concentration (more than two-fold) during the festive period as compared to the pre- and post-festive periods, (iii) the aerosol optical depth (AOD) showed initially higher and subsequent dilution due to local meteorology, (iv) angstrom exponent (AE) showed larger values implying enhancement in fine-mode particles due to festive activity and (v) The NOAA-HYSPLIT air-mass back-trajectory analysis and CALIPSO satellite imageries portray contribution from the trans-boundary pollution through long-range transport mechanism. The results are explained by considering the terrain-induced meteorological conditions and local anthropogenic activities.



The authors acknowledge with thanks the support and encouragement from the authorities of Amity University Haryana. Thanks are also due to the Directors of both ARIES, Nainital and IITM-DU, New Delhi, for their constant cooperation. The HYSPLIT model used in the study was provided by the NOAA Air Resources Laboratory (ARL).

The CALIPSO data were acquired ( The authors also appreciate the assistance from Tanojit Paul and Shubhansh Tiwari of AUH in the analysis of data. The insightful comments and valuable suggestions by the anonymous reviewers are thankfully acknowledged.


  1. Andreae MO, Gelelencser A (2006) Black carbon or brown carbon? The nature of light absorbing carbonaceous aerosols. Atmos Chem Phys 6:3131–3148CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  2. Bach W, Daniels A, Dickinson L, Hertiein F, Morrows J, Margolis S, Dinh VD (2001) Fireworks pollution and health. Int J Environ Stud 7:183–192CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  3. Bergstrom RW, Russell PB, Hignett P (2002) Wavelength dependence of the absorption of black carbon particles: predictions and results from Tarfox experiment and implications for the aerosol single scattering albedo. J Atmos Sci 59:567–577CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  4. Betha R, Balasubramanian R (2013) Particulate emissions from commercial handheld sparklers: evaluation of physical characteristics and emission rates. Aerosol Air Qual Res 13:301–307Google Scholar
  5. Chatterjee A, Sarkar C, Adak A, Mukherjee U, Ghosh SK, Raha S (2013) Ambient air quality during Diwali festival over Kolkata—a mega city in India. Aerosol Air Qual Res 13:1133–1144Google Scholar
  6. Devara PCS, Pandithurai G, Raj PE, Sharma S (1996) Investigations of aerosol optical depth variations using spectroradiometer at an urban station, Pune, India. J Aerosol Sci 27:621–632CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  7. Devara PCS, Maheskumar RS, Raj PE, Dani KK, Sonbawne SM (2001) Some features of aerosol optical depth, ozone and precipitable water content observed over land during the INDOEX-IFP99. Meteorologische Zeirschrift 10:901–908Google Scholar
  8. Devara PCS, Vijayakumar K, Safai PD, Raju MP, Rao PSP (2015) Celebration-induced air quality over a tropical urban station, Pune, India. Atmos Poll Res 6:511–520CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  9. Disselkamp RS, Carpenter MA, Cowin CM, Berkowitz CM, Chapman EG, Zaveri RA, Laulainen NS (2000) Ozone loss in soot aerosols. J Geophys Res 105:9767–9771CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  10. Formenti P, Elber W, Maenhaut W, Haywood J, Andreae MO (2003) Chemical composition of mineral dust aerosol during the Saharan dust experiment (SHADE) airborne campaign in the Cape Verde region, September 2000. J Geophys Res 108(D18):8576. doi: 10.1029/2002JD002647 2005CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  11. Hansen ADA, Rosen H, Novakov T (1984) The aethalometer—an instrument for the real-time measurement of optical absorption by aerosol particles. Sci Total Environ 36:191–196CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  12. Hansen ADA, Turner JR, Allen GA (2007) An algorithm to compensate aethalometer data for the effects of shadowing and scattering. In: Proceedings of 5th Asian aerosol conference, 26–29 Aug, Kaohsiung, TaiwanGoogle Scholar
  13. Iqbal M (1983) An introduction to solar radiation. Academic Press, New York, p 256Google Scholar
  14. Khaparde VV, Pipalatkar PP, Pustode T, Rao CV, Gajghate DG (2012) Influence of burning of fireworks on particle size distribution of PM10 and associated barium at Nagpur. Environ Monit Assess 184:903–911CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  15. Kirchstetter TW, Novakov T, Hobbs PV (2004) Evidence that the spectral dependence of light absorption by aerosols is affected by organic carbon. J Geophys Res 109:D21208. doi: 10.1029/2004JD004999 CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  16. Moosmuller H, Chakrabarty RK, Ehlers KM, Arnott WP (2011) Absorption angstrom coefficient, brown carbon and aerosols: basic concepts, bulk matter, and spherical particles. Atmos Chem Phys 11:1217–1225CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  17. Park SS, Hansen ADA, Sung Cho Y (2010) Measurements of real time black carbon for investigating spot loading effects of aethalometer data. Atmos Environ 44:1449–1455CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  18. Pawar GV, Devara PCS, Aher GR (2015) Identification of aerosol types over an urban site based on air-mass trajectory classification. Atmos Res 164–165:142–155CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  19. Safai PD, Devara PCS, Raju MP, Vijayakumar K, Rao PSP (2014) Relationship between black carbon and associated optical, physical and radiative properties of aerosols over two contrasting environments. Atmos Res 149:292–299CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  20. Schnaiter M, Horvath H, Mohler O, Naumann K-H, Saathof H, Schhock OW (2003) UV-VIS-NIR spectral optical properties of soot and soot-containing aerosols. J Aerosol Sci 34:1421–1444CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  21. Sumit K, Devara PCS, Manoj MG, Safai PD (2011) Winter aerosol and trace gas characteristics over a high-altitude station in the Western Ghats, India. Atmosfera 24:311–328Google Scholar
  22. Thakur B, Chakraborty S, Debsarkar A, Chakrabarty S, Srivastava RC (2010) Air pollution from fireworks during festival of lights (Deepawali) in Howrah, India—a case study. Atmosfera 23:347–365Google Scholar
  23. Twomey S (1977) Atmospheric aerosols. Elsevier, New YorkGoogle Scholar
  24. Virkkula A, Makela T, Hillamo R, Yli-Yuomi T, Hirsikko A, Hemari K, Koponen IK (2007) A simple procedure for correcting loading effects of Aethalometer. J Air Waste Manag Assoc 57:1214–1222Google Scholar
  25. Weingartner E, Saathof H, Schnaiter M, Streit N, Bitnar B, Baltensperger U (2003) Absorption of light by soot particles: determination of the absorption coefficient by means of aethalometers. J Aerosol Sci 34:1445–1463CrossRefGoogle Scholar

Copyright information

© Springer Nature Singapore Pte Ltd. 2018

Authors and Affiliations

  • P. C. S. Devara
    • 1
    Email author
  • M. P. Alam
    • 1
  • U. C. Dumka
    • 2
  • S. Tiwari
    • 3
  • A. K. Srivastava
    • 3
  1. 1.Amity University Haryana (AUH)Gurgaon (Panchgaon-Manesar)India
  2. 2.Aryabhatta Research Institute of Observational Sciences (ARIES)NainitalIndia
  3. 3.Indian Institute of Tropical Meteorology (IITM), Delhi UnitNew DelhiIndia

Personalised recommendations