State Key Joint Laboratory of Environmental Simulation and Pollution Control (Peking University)

State Key Joint Laboratory of Environmental Simulation and Pollution Control (Peking University) is a state laboratory under the support of the Ministry of Science and Technology of China. The petition of this laboratory was filed in 1989 and it was officially approved in October 1995. The laboratory was evaluated with a score of “good” in the evaluations performed in 2000, 2005, and 2010.

The laboratory now has 28 fulltime faculty members, including Prof. TANG, Xiaoyan. The research team consists mainly of young and middle-aged scientists including two professors of the Cheung Kong Scholar’s Program, one visiting professor of the Cheung Kong Scholar’s Program, three awardees of National Science Fund for Distinguished Young Scholars, one awardee of National Science Fund for Outstanding Young Scholars, one tenured associated professor, two “Hundred Talents Program” tenure-track assistant professors, one “Thousand Talents Program” professor, and four members supported by the New Century (or Trans-Century) Talent Program of the Ministry of Education of China. The average age of faculty members is 41.

Over the past two decades, the key laboratory has developed two fields in atmospheric science, i.e., atmospheric chemistry and atmospheric simulation and pollution control. In recent years, the laboratory has carried out a series of researches on urban and regional air pollution, and proposed a novel concept of “Air Pollution Complex”, which has led to paradigm shift in understanding the complicate nature of server air pollution in China. The laboratory has developed research directions including atmospheric oxidation and ozone chemistry, source apportionment and characteristics of fine particulate matters, formation mechanism of air pollution complex and the control measures, air pollution and its climatic and health effects, technical development of atmospheric monitoring. During the last five years, the laboratory has undertaken more than 80 national scientific research projects funded by MOST and NSFC. In total 369 papers including 302 SCI-cited papers were published. Some of important findings were published in Science, Chemical Review, JAMA, PNAS, EHP, Nano Letters, Environ. Sci. Technol., Atmos. Chem. Phys., J. Geophys. Res. and Atmos. Environ. In the last few years, the research team received a number of important awards including the second prize of National Award for Science and Technology Progress, the first prize of Science and Technology Progress by the Ministry of Education, the first prize of National Environmental Protection Science and Technology Award, and the second award for Scientific and Technological Advancement from the Chinese People's Liberation Army.

The research platform consisting of field observations, laboratory experiment, and numerical modeling has received supported in recently years from the national 211 and 985 Programs.

a) Field observations. The laboratory established two research platforms named “atmospheric environment and global change” and “environment and health”. Four stations were set up to carry out long-term measurements of gaseous and particulate pollutants, and meteorological parameters. These stations include “Super sites for urban atmosphere observation” on the campus of Peking University, “Station for regional background of atmospheric environment” at Bashang, “Regional atmospheric environment station” at Changping Campus of Peking University. Furthermore, the laboratory has established the first mobile observational platform for environment and health in China and two mobile containers for intensive field observation. The laboratory has deployed fast-response and in-situ online monitoring technology for the measurement of key parameters related to atmospheric pollutants, such as gaseous pollutants, particle mass concentration, particle chemical and physical properties, and optical property. The technical developments include (1) aerosol collection system for source emission study, such as isokinetic tracking fixed source diluting sampling system and simulation device for biomass combustion; (2) fast-response and in-situ online monitoring technology for the gaseous pollutants and particle chemical components, such as the Gas and Aerosol Collector (GAC), which can detect HONO, HNO3, SO2, HCl, NH3, and aerosol water-soluble ions online; (3) technologies for measuring the precursors, major products, and intermediates of atmospheric photochemical reactions, such as on-line analyzer of atmospheric volatile organic compounds and peroxyacyl nitrates analyzer. The laboratory facilities include ultra-clean lab, general chemical analysis lab, particulate matters and VOCs experimental lab, dioxin lab, air pollution exposure and health lab and bio-aerosol and gene monitoring lab. The laboratory developed the methodologies on analysis of organic carbon (OC)/elemental carbon (EC) and particulate organic matter (POM), water soluble organic acid (WSOC), as well as technologies of source identification and source apportionment of particulate matters and VOCs and methods for measuring atmospheric particulate exposure and biological marker.

b) Laboratory Experiment. An environmental wind tunnel (32 m×3 m×2 m) was built in 1980s as one of its first type in China. The wind tunnel is still functioning to carry out research on air pollutants dispersion, wind pressure on construction projects, and dust elevated by wind. A laboratory for studying atmospheric chemical kinetic reaction was established. The facilities include Knudsen cell coupled with quadruple mass spectrometry, diffuse reflectance infrared Fourier transform spectroscopy (DRIFTS), in-situ multiphase reaction flow tube, Raman micro spectrometry. Researches on surface property of single particle, particle hygroscopicity, heterogeneous reaction kinetics of SO2, NOx and some carbonyl compounds on the surface of particulate matters have been carried out. Reactive uptake coefficients and reaction rate are measured to reveal the reaction mechanism and for the numerical model of atmospheric chemistry.

c) Numerical modeling. The research team has applied various air quality models and boundary layer models to study the transport and transformation mechanisms of the air pollution complex. (1) Applying the regional air quality models CAMx and CMAQ to simulate the urban and regional air quality, analyze pollution process and study the formation mechanism of secondary air pollution; (2)we have developed observational based methods (OBM) and analyzed sensitivity of ozone formations to the concentrations of VOCs and NOx; (3) we have developed inverse models to retrieve the regional source emission intensity and distribution, so as to obtain information on the distribution of emission source on large-scale; (4) Applying Lagrangian model of random particle diffusion,  local and regional atmospheric transport was simulated, which enabling them to make the quantitative estimates for the mesoscale unsteady, non-uniform air flow and pollution diffusion and transportation; (5) by successfully applying the technology of time reversal Lagrangian stochastic diffusion, the researchers have calculated footprint of fixed point observation, and introduced the concept of footprint to mesoscale scope and three-dimensional space, which can be applied to the research and analysis of process and mechanism of atmospheric environment in urban scale; (6)our team has established the first PKU Large Eddy Simulation model, and made remarkable progress in research and obtained great achievements in terms of non-uniform surface boundary layer structure, dust diffusion and transportation process, near-surface turbulence characteristics and footprint analysis.