Computer Mapping of Air Quality

by David R. Boone, (A.M.ASCE), Sr. Civ. Engrg. Asst.; Bureau of Engrg., Dept. of Public Works, City of Los Angeles, Los Angeles, Calif.; formerly, Grad. Student, Univ. of California, Irvine, Calif.,
G. Scott Samuelsen, Assoc. Prof. of Mech. and Environmental Engrg.; School of Engrg., Univ. of California, Irvine, Calif.,

Serial Information: Journal of the Environmental Engineering Division, 1977, Vol. 103, Issue 6, Pg. 969-979

Document Type: Journal Paper


A methodology for mapping the spatial distribution of air pollutants by computer is presented. Using input data from discretely located air monitoring stations, estimates of pollutant concentrations are computed at 1.2-mile (2-km) increments between stations by two-dimensional interpolation. Maps are then printed to show the resulting distribution. Application of this technique to mapping the oxidant distribution in a select study area is demonstrated. Oxidant data are displayed in both measured units (e.g., pphm) and as Pollutant Standards Index values. Practical applications examined include the use of mapping to site air monitoring stations, providing public information, preparation of environmental impact studies, and conducting trend analyses.

Subject Headings: Air quality | Mapping | Pollutants | Air pollution | Computing in civil engineering | Spatial distribution | Site investigation | Public information programs

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