On-road and laboratory evaluation of combustion aerosols-Part 2:. Summary of spark ignition engine results

D. B. Kittelson, W. F. Watts, J. P. Johnson, J. J. Schauer, D. R. Lawson

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

129 Scopus citations


The primary objective was to characterize exhaust aerosols from a small group of in-use, light-duty, spark ignition (SI) vehicles operated on-road, and on a chassis dynamometer. A significant particle signature above background was not measured at highway cruise condition. Number emissions were much higher during acceleration, at high-speed cruise, and during cold-cold starts. Group average fuel-specific number emissions range from 3.9 × 1014 to 1.0 × 1017 particles/kg of fuel. Cold-cold start temperatures, driving cycles and vehicular condition influence SI emissions. Elemental carbon was a major contributor to mass emissions measured in chassis dynamometer Unified Driving Cycle (UDC) tests averaging 64% and 34% of the mass emissions for cold-cold and hot start cycles, respectively. Average ratios of cold-cold to hot start emissions were 3.3, 7.6, and 22 for CPC number, filter mass and SMPS volume, respectively. Apportionment results showed that on a weekly weighted basis and on weekdays, the majority of observed particle number was attributed to heavy-duty diesel traffic. Weekend production of particles was attributable to light-duty automobiles. On a per vehicle basis, heavy-duty vehicles produced substantially greater number concentrations. On a fuel-specific basis, heavy-duty vehicles produce slightly higher concentrations of particles than light-duty vehicles. The relative contribution of light-duty vehicles to particle number emissions increased as particle size decreased, for the smallest particles apportioned number emissions were 1.3 × 1016 and 7.1 × 1015 particles/kg of fuel for heavy-duty and light-duty vehicles, respectively. Comparison of on-road chase and apportionment results with chassis dynamometer tests in a certification type facility suggests that the latter may underestimate real-world number emissions.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)931-949
Number of pages19
JournalJournal of Aerosol Science
Issue number8
StatePublished - Aug 2006

Bibliographical note

Funding Information:
Funding for this project came from the US Department of Energy, Office of FreedomCar and Vehicle Technologies under Cooperative Agreement DE-FC04-01Al66910. The Coordinating Research Council (CRC) CRC E-43 project provided funds for the instruments and MEL used in this project.


  • Light-duty vehicle
  • Nanoparticles
  • On-road measurement
  • Source apportionment
  • Spark ignition aerosol
  • Spark ignition engine


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