This paper concerns a study of the morphology, chemical composition and size distribution of PM10 fractions of atmospheric particulate. The results shown are referred to PM10 samplings performed during April 2002 in three sampling sites in Bari (coastal city of South Italy). In this paper the samples analysed showed a predominance (about 80% of the total number of particles) of round and elliptic particles in the range 0.5–8 m. The particles diameter distribution curve was easily interpreted by an unimodal lognormal distribution; a linear plot showed, instead, a trend more complicated and at least three Gaussian curves were needed to account for the size distribution. Heavy metals as zinc, manganese, iron, copper and lead were contained in particle fraction with diameter less than 1 m, while the particles with diameter longer than 2.5 m were found to be of crustal and marine origin.
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