Polyfluorinated compounds in the atmosphere along a cruise pathway from the Japan Sea to the Arctic Ocean


Neutral polyfluorinated alkyl substances (PFASs) were measured in high-volume air samples collected on board the research vessel Snow Dragon during the 4th Chinese National Arctic Expedition from the Japan Sea to the Arctic Ocean in 2010. Four volatile and semi-volatile PFASs (fluorotelomer alcohols (FTOHs), fluorotelomer acids (FTAs), perfluoroalkyl sulfonamides (FASAs), and sulfonamidoethanols (FASEs)) were analyzed respectively in the gas and particle phases. FTOHs were the dominant PFASs in the gas phase (61–358 pg m−3), followed by FTAs (5.2–47.9 pg m−3), FASEs (1.9–15.0 pg m−3), and FASAs (0.5–2.1 pg m−3). In the particle phase, the dominant PFAS class was FTOHs (1.0–9.9 pg m−3). The particle-associated fraction followed the general trend of FASEs > FASAs > FTOHs. Compared with other atmospheric PFAS measurements, the ranges of concentrations of ∑FTOH in this study were similar to those reported from Toronto, north America (urban), the northeast Atlantic Ocean, and northern Germany. Significant correlations between FASEs in the gas phase and ambient air temperature indicate that cold surfaces such as sea-ice, snowpack, and surface seawater influence atmospheric FASEs.
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