Recognition and detailed characterization of solid particles emitted from thermal power plants into the environment is highly important due to their potential detrimental effects on human health. Snow cover is used for the identification of anthropogenic emissions in the environment. However, little is known about types, physical and chemical properties of solid airborne particles (SAP) deposited in snow around thermal power plants. The purpose of this study is to quantify and characterize in detail the traceable SAP deposited in snow near fossil fuel thermal power plant in order to identify its emissions into the environment. Applying the scanning electron microscopy-energy dispersive spectroscopy, and X-ray diffraction, mineral and anthropogenic phase groups in SAP deposited in snow near the plant and in fly ash were observed. We identified quartz, albite and mullite as most abundant mineral phases and carbonaceous matter, slag and spherical particles as dominate anthropogenic phases. This is the first study reporting that zircon and anthropogenic sulphide-bearing, metal oxide-bearing, intermetallic compound-bearing and rare-earth element-bearing particles were detected in snow deposits near thermal power plant. The identified mineral and anthropogenic phases can be used as tracers for fossil fuel combustion emissions, especially with regard to their possible effect on human health.
ASJC Scopus subject areas
- Environmental Chemistry
- Water Science and Technology
- Waste Management and Disposal