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Title: Impact of the 2009 Attica Wild Fires on the Air Quality in Urban Athens
Authors: Amiridis, Vassilis 
Zerefos, Christos S. 
Kazadzis, S. 
Gerasopoulos, Evangelos 
Eleftheratos, Kostas 
Vrekoussis, Mihalis 
Stohl, Andreas 
Mamouri, Rodanthi-Elisavet 
Kokkalis, Panagiotis 
Papayannis, Alexandros D. 
Eleftheriadis, Konstantinos 
Diapouli, Evangelia 
Keramitsoglou, Iphigenia 
Kontoes, Haris 
Kotroni, Vassiliki 
Lagouvardos, Konstantinos 
Marinou, Eleni 
Giannakaki, Elina 
Kostopoulou, Effie 
Giannakopoulos, Christos 
Richter, Andreas 
Burrows, John Philip 
Mihalopoulos, Nikolaos 
Major Field of Science: Engineering and Technology
Field Category: Civil Engineering
Keywords: Aerosol;Biomass burning;Photochemistry;Pollution;Radiation
Issue Date: Jan-2012
Source: Atmospheric Environment, 2012, vol.46, pp. 536-544
Volume: 46
Start page: 536
End page: 544
Abstract: At the end of August 2009, wild fires ravaged the north-eastern fringes of Athens destroying invaluable forest wealth of the Greek capital. In this work, the impact of these fires on the air quality of Athens and surface radiation levels is examined. Satellite imagery, smoke dispersion modeling and meteorological data confirm the advection of smoke under cloud-free conditions over the city of Athens. Lidar measurements showed that the smoke plume dispersed in the free troposphere and lofted over the city reaching heights between 2 and 4 km. Ground-based sunphotometric measurements showed extreme aerosol optical depth, reaching nearly 6 in the UV wavelength range, accompanied by a reduction up to 70% of solar irradiance at ground. The intensive aerosol optical properties, namely the Ångström exponent, the lidar ratio, and the single scattering albedo, showed typical values for highly absorbing fresh smoke particles. In-situ air quality measurements revealed the impact of the smoke plume down to the surface with a slight delay on both the particulate and gaseous phase. Surface aerosols increase was encountered mainly in the fine mode with prominent elevation of OC and EC levels. Photochemical processes, studied via NOx titration of O3, were also shown to be different compared to typical urban photochemistry.
ISSN: 1352-2310
DOI: 10.1016/j.atmosenv.2011.07.056
Rights: Copyright © 2011 Elsevier
Type: Article
Affiliation : Cyprus University of Technology 
National Observatory Athens 
Academy of Athens 
University of Athens 
University of Bremen 
Norwegian Institute for Air Research 
National Technical University of Athens 
National Centre for Scientific Research Demokritos 
Aristotle University of Thessaloniki 
University of Crete 
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