Fleet-based vehicle emission factors using low-cost sensors: Case study in parking garages

Traditionally, vehicle emissions measurements rely on reference-grade instruments whose high cost and complexity have limited their deployment in real-world environments. New simple-to-operate, low-cost sensing technologies are a potential solution to this problem. To assess their suitability, the authors deployed six Sensit Real-time, Affordable, Multi-Pollutant (RAMP) monitors measuring PM₂.₅, NO, NO₂, CO₂, O₃ and CO in three parking garages on the UBC Vancouver campus from April–August 2019. UBC Parking Services provided real-time vehicle counts to help validate the authors' method. After sensor calibration, integrated pollutant and CO₂ signals were converted to fuel-based emission factors (EFs). The authors calculated EFs fell within the range of previous studies. Evening EFs when vehicles were cold were 10–50% higher than in the morning. The authors also observed a disproportional contribution of high emitters; the top 25% of plumes contributed 45–65% of total emissions. The authors' findings indicate that low-cost sensors are a promising technology for real-world vehicle emissions measurement.


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  • Accession Number: 01762952
  • Record Type: Publication
  • Files: TRIS
  • Created Date: Dec 3 2020 3:19PM