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Modeling of Particulate Matter Emissions from Agricultural Operations
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State Air Pollution Regulation Agencies (SAPRAs) issue and enforce permits that limit particulate matter emissions from all sources including layer and broiler facilities, cattle feedyards, dairies, cotton gins, and grain elevators. In this research, a process was developed to determine distances from emitting sources to where the estimated concentrations were less than the National Ambient Air Quality Standards (NAAQS). These distances are a function of emission rates and meteorological conditions. Different protocols were used to develop emission factors for cattle feedyards and layer houses. Dispersion modeling with American Meteorological Society/Environmental Protection Agency Regulatory Model (AERMOD) was conducted to determine the emissions of particulate matter. These data were used to determine the distances from the sources to where the concentrations of particulate matter (PM) would be less than the NAAQS. The current air-permitting process requires that concentrations from a source do not exceed the NAAQS at the property line and beyond for the facility to be in compliance with its permit conditions. Emission factors for particulate matter less than 10 micrometers (PM10) were developed for cattle feedyards using a reverse modeling protocol and Tapered Element Oscillating Microbalance (TEOM) sampler data. Corrections were applied to the TEOM measurements to account for TEOM vs. filter-based low-volume (FBLV) sampler bias and over-sampling of PM10 pre-collectors. Invalid concentrations and dust peaks larger than mean ± 3 times the standard deviation were excluded from this study. AERMOD predictions of downwind concentrations at cotton gins were observed for compliance with 24-hour PM10 and PM2.5 NAAQS at property lines. The emissions from three cotton gins were analyzed at 50 m and 100 m distances. TEOM and FBLV samplers were used to collect 24-hour PM10 measurements inside a laying hen house. The distances to the property lines at which the emissions of PM10 were below the 24-hour average PM10 standards were estimated using AERMOD. The results suggested that the special use of the NAAQS for as the property-line concentration not to be exceeded, could be problematic to agriculture. Emission factors that were comparable of published emission factors were obtained in this study. Large distances to property lines were required when minimum flow rate recommendations were not considered. Emission factors that are representative of the emissions in a particular facility are essential; else facilities could be inappropriately regulated.
cattle feed yard
laying hen operation
cotton gin, FRM samplers
Bairy, Jnana 1988- (2013). Modeling of Particulate Matter Emissions from Agricultural Operations. Master's thesis, Texas A&M University. Available electronically from