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The Scientific World Journal
Volume 2012, Article ID 735697, 13 pages
Research Article

The Influence of Wildfires on Aerosol Size Distributions in Rural Areas

1Department of Physics (IMARENAB), University of León, León 24071, Spain
2Centre for Environmental and Marine Studies (CESAM), University of Aveiro, Aveiro 3810-193, Portugal

Received 27 October 2011; Accepted 8 December 2011

Academic Editor: Beat Schmid

Copyright © 2012 E. Alonso-Blanco et al. This is an open access article distributed under the Creative Commons Attribution License, which permits unrestricted use, distribution, and reproduction in any medium, provided the original work is properly cited.


The number of particles and their size distributions were measured in a rural area, during the summer, using a PCASP-X. The aim was to study the influence of wildfires on particle size distributions. The comparative studies carried out reveal an average increase of around ten times in the number of particles in the fine mode, especially in sizes between 0.10 and 0.14 μm, where the increase is of nearly 20 times. An analysis carried out at three different points in time—before, during, and after the passing of the smoke plume from the wildfires—shows that the mean geometric diameter of the fine mode in the measurements affected by the fire is smaller than the one obtained in the measurements carried out immediately before and after (0.14 μm) and presents average values of 0.11 μm.