By utilising Thermal Desorption Gas Chromatography Isotope Ratio Mass Spectrometry (TD-GC-irMS), we can investigate the isotopic ratio of carbon (δ13C) and hydrogen (δ2H) in Volatile Organic Compounds (VOCs) and Polycyclic Aromatic Hydrocarbons (PAHs). This can be used to determine whether the source of environmental pollutants is naturally occurring (bushfires) or anthropogenic (industrial emissions).
WA-OIGC is now doing further work using TD-GC-irMS looking specifically at emissions generated by bushfires to investigate the relationship between plants with different carbon fixation pathways and their smoke emission profiles and impact on the environment.
Vitzthum von Eckstaedt, C.D., Grice, K., Ioppolo-Armanios, M., Kelly, D., Gibberd, M., (2012) Compound specific carbon and hydrogen stable isotope analyses of volatile organic compounds in various emissions of combustion processes. Chemosphere, 89(11), 1407-1413. https://doi.org/10.1016/j.chemosphere.2012.06.005
Vitzthum von Eckstaedt, C., Grice, K., Ioppolo-Armanios, M., Chidlow, G., Jones, M., (2011) δD and δ13C analyses of atmospheric volatile organic compounds by thermal desorption gas chromatography isotope ratio mass spectrometry. Journal of Chromatography A, 1218(37), 6511-6517. https://doi.org/10.1016/j.chroma.2011.06.098
Vitzthum von Eckstaedt, C., Grice, K., Ioppolo-Armanios, M., Jones, M., (2011) δ13C and δD of volatile organic compounds in an alumina industry stack emission. Atmospheric Environment, 45(31), 5477-5483. https://doi.org/10.1016/j.atmosenv.2011.06.064