Particulate air pollution is a mixture of solid and/or liquid particles that vary in size, composition and origin. These particles enter the atmosphere by natural pathways or by the action of man. The undeniable effect of the presence of particulates in the atmosphere is the growing number of people affected from respiratory problems, lung cancer and cardiopulmonary diseases. Source apportionment based on bulk chemical analysis often uses advanced statistical tools for a detailed source categorization. In contrast, in this study the source apportionment is based on properties of individual particles determined by scanning electron microscopy with energy-dispersed spectrometry (SEM-EDS). The receptor site is located near a steel plant in the Apulia Region, South Italy
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