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Scientific Workshop on Ozone, Particulate Pollution Set for Oct. 4-6 in Riverside

Scientific Workshop on Ozone, Particulate Pollution Set for Oct. 4-6 in Riverside

(September 30, 1999)

A three-day scientific workshop on ozone and fine particulate air pollution, hosted by the College of Engineering-Center for Environmental Research and Technology (CE-CERT) at the University of California, Riverside, is scheduled for Monday, Oct. 4, through Wednesday, Oct. 6, at the Mission Inn in Riverside.

The workshop will bring together 50 of the world's leading scientists in atmospheric chemistry from the U.S. and Europe to discuss the latest findings on the formation of ozone and particulates. The conference will also include discussions of a new project at UCR to develop a "next generation" smog chamber facility to better simulate chemical reactions in the atmosphere.

UCR's environmental research laboratory recently was awarded nearly $3 million from the federal Environmental Protection Agency to design and build a new smog chamber that will provide more controlled and extensive measurements of pollutants in photochemical smog than has previously been possible.

The Oct. 4-6 workshop - titled "U.S./German Ozone/Fine Particle Science and Environmental Chamber Workshop" - is intended, in part, to gather feedback from leading atmospheric chemists on the design and construction of the new chamber at CE-CERT. The project is expected to take three years.

The biannual U.S./German workshops on the photochemical ozone problem have been held alternatively in the U.S. and Germany as a cooperative project between the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency and German environmental regulatory agencies. This year's workshop extends the scope to the particulate air pollution problem, with emphasis on use of environmental chambers to study these problems.

Two classes of pollutants will be targeted in the UCR research and discussed at the workshop. Ozone, a principal constituent of smog, is an invisible gas that forms from the reaction of nitrogen oxides and other gases in the presence of sunlight. It can c ause shortness of breath and is believed to damage lung cells. Particulates come from smoke and soot, but also can be formed in the atmosphere from nitrogen oxides and sulfur dioxides. Fine particulates can lodge themselves deep in the lungs when inhaled. Too small to be seen individually by the naked eye, they collectively impair visibility in the atmosphere.

Chemical reactions in the atmosphere that form ozone and particulates are highly complex. Smog chambers have been used in research to simulate those reactions in order to model more accurately the effects of emissions from automobiles, factories and other sources on air quality.

Reporters are invited to attend and cover the scientific workshop. An agenda can be found at The Mission Inn is located at 3649 Mission Inn Ave. in Riverside.

The University of California, Riverside ( is a doctoral research university, a living laboratory for groundbreaking exploration of issues critical to Inland Southern California, the state and communities around the world. Reflecting California's diverse culture, UCR's enrollment has exceeded 21,000 students. The campus opened a medical school in 2013 and has reached the heart of the Coachella Valley by way of the UCR Palm Desert Center. The campus has an annual statewide economic impact of more than $1 billion.

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