3.7 Wind Influences on the Dispersion of Aerosols Emitted from Pre- and Post-Harvest Sugarcane Field Burning Practices

Wednesday, 30 May 2012: 5:15 PM
Press Room (Omni Parker House)
April L. Hiscox, University of South Carolina, Columbia, SC; and J. J. Wang, S. Viator, and R. Sheffield

Agricultural production practices likely influence the intensity of emission of greenhouse gases, ammonia, and particulate matter. In this study, particulate matter emissions generated by burning practices were monitored to determine fate and transport of the plumes. Sugarcane is a high biomass crop and burning practices are utilized because they allow for an overall lower cost of production, more efficient harvesting, a shortened harvest season, a potential increase in yield and the possibility of a higher quality crop. Atmospheric fate and transport of smoke plumes during sugarcane harvesting and residue burning is assessed using scanning elastic backscatter lidar. Lidar measurements were made continuously during a standing burn, a combining operation, and a ground burn in November of 2010, and standing and ground burns during November 2011. Horizontal scans were taken at increasing heights above the field to determine the extent and rise of plumes generated by burning. Sonic anemometer measurements were taken to monitor the short time scale wind changes during the standing burn. In-situ samples were also taken to characterize smoke composition. The lidar data were used to characterize the spatial extent of the plume (rise and spread) for the two different burning practices. Data of this nature has the potential to expand our knowledge of pollutant transport and dispersion on micrometeorological time scales.
- Indicates paper has been withdrawn from meeting
- Indicates an Award Winner