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Department of Civil, Environmental, and Geospatial Engineering


The dry deposition process refers to flux loss of an atmospheric pollutant due to uptake of the pollutant by the Earth's surfaces, including vegetation, underlying soil, and any other surface types. In chemistry transport models (CTMs), the dry deposition flux of a chemical species is typically calculated as the product of its surface layer concentration and its dry deposition velocity (Vd); the latter is a variable that needs to be highly empirically parameterized due to too many meteorological, biological, and chemical factors affecting this process. The gaseous dry deposition scheme of Zhang et al. (2003) parameterizes Vd for 31 inorganic and organic gaseous species. The present study extends the scheme of Zhang et al. (2003) to include an additional 12 oxidized volatile organic compounds (oVOCs) and hydrogen cyanide (HCN), while keeping the original model structure and formulas, to meet the demand of CTMs with increasing complexity. Model parameters for these additional chemical species are empirically chosen based on their physicochemical properties, namely the effective Henry's law constants and oxidizing capacities. Modeled Vd values are compared against field flux measurements over a mixed forest in the southeastern US during June 2013. The model captures the basic features of the diel cycles of the observed Vd. Modeled Vd values are comparable to the measurements for most of the oVOCs at night. However, modeled Vd values are mostly around 1 cm s-1 during daytime, which is much smaller than the observed daytime maxima of 2-5 cm s-1. Analysis of the individual resistance terms and uptake pathways suggests that flux divergence due to fast atmospheric chemical reactions near the canopy was likely the main cause of the large model-measurement discrepancies during daytime. The extended dry deposition scheme likely provides conservative Vd values for many oVOCs. While higher Vd values and bidirectional fluxes can be simulated by coupling key atmospheric chemical processes into the dry deposition scheme, we suggest that more experimental evidence of high oVOC Vd values at additional sites is required to confirm the broader applicability of the high values studied here. The underlying processes leading to high measured oVOC Vd values require further investigation.

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Publication Title

Geoscientific Model Development

Creative Commons License

Creative Commons Attribution 4.0 International License
This work is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution 4.0 International License.


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