Ambient air - Measurement of elemental carbon (EC) and organic carbon (OC) collected on filters
This European Standard gives guidance on the measurement of elemental carbon (EC) and organic carbon (OC) following the requirement for the networks of all EU member states to measure EC and OC in particulate matter from June 2010 at background sites according to the Council Directive 2008/50/EC on ambient air quality and cleaner air for Europe .
This European Standard describes the analytical procedures for determining EC and OC on quartz fibre filters as µg/cm2, and the subsequent calculation of concentrations as µg/m3. Sampling onto filters is to be done in accordance with EN 12341:2014 for PM2,5. The sampling process determines the size fraction of the particulate matter, the retention of semi-volatile material, and uptake/loss of volatile organic compounds on the filter at the time of sampling.
The same analysis method may also be used for smaller size fractions than PM2,5. Any possible additional artefacts for larger particles, e.g. pyrolysis or higher concentrations of carbonates, should be assessed.
The scope includes rural background, urban background, road side and industrial measurement sites, to allow the assessment of additional exposure of people in urban areas as stated in the objectives of the council directive and to achieve coherence in the European approach.
The applicable concentration range of the proposed method is limited by the optical correction and instrument applied in the analysis of EC and OC. This method was validated from 0,2 µg CEC/cm² and 1,8 µg COC/cm² to 38 µg CEC/cm² and 49 µg COC/cm² in the laboratory and to 16 µg CEC/cm² and 45 µg COC/cm² in the field.