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Emissions of soot, PAHs, ultrafine particles, NOx, and other health relevant compounds from stressed burning of candles in indoor air

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DOI

  • Christina Andersen, Lund University
  • ,
  • Yuliya Omelekhina, Lund University
  • ,
  • Berit Brøndum Rasmussen
  • ,
  • Mette Nygaard Bennekov
  • ,
  • Søren Nielsen Skov
  • Morten Køcks, Dansk Teknologisk Institut, Aarhus
  • ,
  • Kai Wang, China Agricultural University
  • ,
  • Bo Strandberg, Lund University
  • ,
  • Fredrik Mattsson, Lund University
  • ,
  • Merete Bilde
  • Marianne Glasius
  • Joakim Pagels, Lund University
  • ,
  • Aneta Wierzbicka, Lund University

Burning candles release a variety of pollutants to indoor air, some of which are of concern for human health. We studied emissions of particles and gases from the stressed burning of five types of pillar candles with different wax and wick compositions. The stressed burning was introduced by controlled fluctuating air velocities in a 21.6 m3 laboratory chamber. The aerosol physicochemical properties were measured both in well-mixed chamber air and directly above the candle flame with online and offline techniques. All candles showed different emission profiles over time with high repeatability among replicates. The particle mass emissions from stressed burning for all candle types were dominated by soot (black carbon; BC). The wax and wick composition strongly influenced emissions of BC, PM2.5, and particle-phase polycyclic aromatic hydrocarbons (PAHs), and to lower degree ultrafine particles, inorganic and organic carbon fraction of PM, but did not influence NOx, formaldehyde, and gas-phase PAHs. Measurements directly above the flame showed empirical evidence of short-lived strong emission peaks of soot particles. The results show the importance of including the entire burn time of candles in exposure assessments, as their emissions can vary strongly over time. Preventing stressed burning of candles can reduce exposure to pollutants in indoor air.

Original languageEnglish
JournalIndoor Air
Volume31
Issue6
Pages (from-to)2033-2048
Number of pages16
ISSN0905-6947
DOIs
Publication statusPublished - Nov 2021

    Research areas

  • aerosol, airborne particles, black carbon, candle emissions, flickering candle flame, gaseous pollutants, RESIDENTIAL OUTDOOR, COMBUSTION, AEROSOLS, POLLUTANTS, POLYCYCLIC AROMATIC-HYDROCARBONS, PM2.5 TRACE-ELEMENTS, PERSONAL EXPOSURES, HIGH-RESOLUTION, FINE, SOURCE APPORTIONMENT

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