Biomass combustion leads to the release of huge amounts of toxic contaminants that disturb the atmospheric ambient interfering on climate and creating appalling health effects. However, there is still a lack of information on the physicochemical properties of the emitted products, in special with regard of the particulate phase.
The main goal of this study was the characterization of size and morphology of particles emitted from combustion of wood from three common Iberian trees (oak -Quercus pyrenaica-, beech -Fagus sylvatica- and poplar -Populus nigra-), in a woodstove. The size of the monomers and the morphological descriptors of the carbon aerosol aggregates were studied by Scanning Electron Microscope (SEM) and Digital Image (DIA) techniques.
The morphological characterization, by parameters such as elongation, concavity and sphericity, allowed to directly link the carbon emission factors (organic carbon vs. elemental carbon, determined by a thermo-optical method), and thus the combustion efficiency rather than with the type of wood, with the recently emitted fresh carbon aggregate structure. A major compactness on the fresh structure will be directly favor the adsorption of readily available atmospheric compounds, directly related to a quicker and higher degree of photochemical oxidation in the atmosphere and severe climate and environmental effects.