17 results found
Woodward H, Schroeder A, de Nazelle A, et al., 2023, Do we need high temporal resolution modelling of exposure in urban areas? A test case, Science of the Total Environment, Vol: 885, Pages: 163711-163711, ISSN: 0048-9697
Roadside concentrations of harmful pollutants such as NOx are highly variable in both space and time. This is rarely considered when assessing pedestrian and cyclist exposures. We aim to fully describe the spatio-temporal variability of exposures of pedestrians and cyclists travelling along a road at high resolution. We evaluate the value added of high spatio-temporal resolution compared to high spatial resolution only. We also compare high resolution vehicle emissions modelling to using a constant volume source. We highlight conditions of peak exposures, and discuss implications for health impact assessments. Using the large eddy simulation code Fluidity we simulate NOx concentrations at a resolution of 2 m and 1 s along a 350 m road segment in a complex real-world street geometry including an intersection and bus stops. We then simulate pedestrian and cyclist journeys for different routes and departure times. For the high spatio-temporal method, the standard deviation in 1 s concentration experienced by pedestrians (50.9 μg.m-3) is nearly three times greater than that predicted by the high-spatial only (17.5 μg.m-3) or constant volume source (17.6 μg.m-3) methods. This exposure is characterised by low concentrations punctuated by short duration, peak exposures which elevate the mean exposure and are not captured by the other two methods. We also find that the mean exposure of cyclists on the road (31.8 μg.m-3) is significantly greater than that of cyclists on a roadside path (25.6 μg.m-3) and that of pedestrians on a sidewalk (17.6 μg.m-3). We conclude that ignoring high resolution temporal air pollution variability experienced at the breathing time scale can lead to a mischaracterization of pedestrian and cyclist exposures, and therefore also potentially the harm caused. High resolution methods reveal that peaks, and hence mean exposures, can be meaningfully reduced by avoiding hyper-local hotspots such as bus stops and junctions.
ApSimon H, Oxley T, Woodward H, et al., 2023, Integrated assessment modelling of future air quality in the UK to 2050, and synergies with net-zero strategies, Atmosphere, Vol: 14, Pages: 1-21, ISSN: 2073-4433
Integrated assessment modelling (IAM) has been successfully used in the development of international agreements to reduce transboundary pollution in Europe, based on the GAINS model of IIASA. At a national level in the UK, a similar approach has been taken with the UK Integrated Assessment Model, UKIAM, superimposing pollution abatement measures and behavioural change on energy projections designed to meet targets set for the reduction of greenhouse gas emissions and allowing for natural and imported contributions from other countries and shipping. This paper describes how the UKIAM was used in the development of proposed targets for the reduction of fine particulate PM2.5 in the UK Environment Act, exploring scenarios encompassing different levels of ambition in reducing the emissions of air pollutants up to 2050, with associated health and other environmental benefits. There are two PM2.5 targets, an annual mean concentration target setting a maximum concentration to be reached by a future year, and a population exposure reduction target with benefits for health across the whole population. The work goes further, also demonstrating links to social deprivation. There is a strong connection between climate measures aimed at reducing net GHG emissions to zero by 2050 and future air quality, which may be positive or negative, as illustrated by sectoral studies for road transport where electrification of the fleet needs to match the evolution of energy production, and for domestic heating, where the use of wood for heating is an air quality issue. The UKIAM has been validated against air pollution measurements and other types of modelling, but there are many uncertainties, including future energy projections.
Oxley T, Vieno M, Woodward H, et al., 2023, Reduced-form and complex Actm modelling for air quality policy development: a model inter-comparison, Environment International, Vol: 171, Pages: 1-13, ISSN: 0160-4120
Simulation models can be valuable tools in supporting development of air pollution policy. However, exploration of future scenarios depends on reliable and robust modelling to provide confidence in outcomes which cannot be tested against measurements. Here we focus on the UK Integrated Assessment Model, a fast reduced-form model with a purpose to support policy development with modelling of multiple alternative future scenarios, and the EMEP4UK model which is a complex Eulerian Atmospheric Chemistry Transport Model requiring significant computing resources. The EMEP4UK model has been used to model selected core scenarios to compare with UKIAM, and to investigate sensitivity studies such as the interannual variability in response to meteorological differences between years. This model intercomparison addresses total PM2.5, primary PM2.5 and Secondary Inorganic Aerosol concentrations for a baseline of 2018 and selected scenarios for projections to 2040. This work has confirmed the robustness of the UK Integrated Assessment Model for assessing alternative futures through a direct comparison with EMEP4UK. Both models have shown good agreement with measurements, and EMEP4UK shows an ability to replicate past trends. These comparisons highlight how a combination of reduced-form modelling (UKIAM) and complex chemical transport modelling (EMEP4UK) can be effectively used in support of air pollution policy development, informing understanding of projected futures in the context of emerging evidence and uncertainties.
Woodward H, de Kreij RJB, Kruger ES, et al., 2022, An evaluation of the risk of airborne transmission of COVID-19 on an inter-city train carriage, INDOOR AIR, Vol: 32, ISSN: 0905-6947
Woodward H, Schroeder A, Le Cornec C, et al., 2022, High resolution modelling of traffic emissions using the large eddy simulation code Fluidity, Atmosphere, Vol: 13, ISSN: 2073-4433
The large eddy simulation (LES) code Fluidity was used to simulate the dispersion of NOx traffic emissions along a road in London. The traffic emissions were represented by moving volume sources, one for each vehicle, with time-varying emission rates. Traffic modelling software was used to generate the vehicle movement, while an instantaneous emissions model was used to calculate the NOx emissions at 1 s intervals. The traffic emissions were also modelled as a constant volume source along the length of the road for comparison. A validation of Fluidity against wind tunnel measurements is presented before a qualitative comparison of the LES concentrations with measured roadside concentrations. Fluidity showed an acceptable comparison with the wind tunnel data for velocities and turbulence intensities. The in-canyon tracer concentrations were found to be significantly different between the wind tunnel and Fluidity. This difference was explained by the very high sensitivity of the in-canyon tracer concentrations to the precise release location. Despite this, the comparison showed that Fluidity was able to provide a realistic representation of roadside concentration variations at high temporal resolution, which is not achieved when traffic emissions are modelled as a constant volume source or by Gaussian plume models.
Collins CM, Otero A, Woodward H, 2022, Shape matters: reducing people’s exposure to poor air quality using sculpted infrastructure elements, Cities & Health, Vol: 6, Pages: 1-7, ISSN: 2374-8834
Air pollution in cities disproportionately affects children and those living in economically-deprived areas near busy roadways. Walls are effective in deflecting particulate matter but the addition of shaping either at the design stage, or as retrofit, improves performance. High-wall baffles reduce distal vortex accumulations; On pavements, low-level baffles can deflect suspended particulates back towards the road surface. These shaped structures can scaffold urban plantings and, in tandem, improve the effectiveness of urban green in this context. Shaped baffles are immediately effective, inexpensive and create a win-win that engages stakeholders. This awareness will drive collaborations between planners, designers and modellers for effective and beautiful street furniture elements that reduce pollution exposure.
de Kreij RJB, Wykes MSD, Woodward H, et al., 2022, Modeling disease transmission in a train carriage using a simple 1D-model, INDOOR AIR, Vol: 32, ISSN: 0905-6947
Woodward H, Oxley T, Rowe EC, et al., 2022, An exceedance score for the assessment of the impact of nitrogen deposition on habitats in the UK, Environmental Modelling and Software, Vol: 150, Pages: 1-11, ISSN: 1364-8152
Large areas of nitrogen-sensitive habitats are currently estimated to be in exceedance of their critical loads (CLs) as indicators for protection from nitrogen deposition. In the UK, deposition estimates from the semi-empirical Concentration Based Estimated Deposition (CBED) model are used for official reporting of current exceedances. The UK Integrated Assessment Model (UKIAM) framework is designed to provide future projections of concentrations and deposition due to projected changes in emissions. UKIAM has been extended to provide alternative deposition estimates aligned with those of CBED, and the results combined with the range in habitat CL values to create an exceedance score, leading to a probabilistic evaluation of CL exceedances. The utility of the method is demonstrated by analysing a series of hypothetical scenarios. It is shown that NH3 mitigation is likely to be four times more effective in reducing CL exceedances in the UK than the mitigation of NOx emissions.
Mehlig D, 2021, Electrification of road transport and the impacts on air quality and health in the UK, Atmosphere, Vol: 12, Pages: 1-15, ISSN: 2073-4433
Currently, many cities in Europe are affected by concentrations of PM2.5 and NO2 above the WHO guidelines on the protection of human health. This is a global problem in which the growth of road transport constitutes a major factor. Looking to the future, electric vehicles (EVs) are considered to be the choice technology for reducing road transport greenhouse gas emissions, but their impact on air quality needs to be considered. Taking the UK as a case study, this paper begins by understanding the trajectory of a future scenario without the introduction of EVs, reflecting on the latest emission control improvements in internal combustion engine vehicles (ICEVs). This is then compared to a 2050 scenario in which the introduction of EVs, based on the UK government’s Transport Decarbonisation Plan, is reviewed. This plan includes a ban on the sale of ICEV cars and LGVs, beginning in 2030, with the subsequent electrification of heavier vehicles. By 2030, population exposure to NOx was found to be significantly reduced in the ICEV scenario, with a marginal further reduction found for the EV scenario. The EV scenario further reduced NOx exposure by 2050, with most of the benefits being realized before 2040. For the ICEV and EV scenario, PM2.5 emissions were largely unchanged due to the primary contribution of non-exhaust emissions, suggesting that EVs are likely to yield relatively smaller changes in exposure to PM2.5 than for NOx.
Woodward H, Fan S, Bhagat RK, et al., 2021, Air flow experiments on a train carriage-towards understanding the risk of airborne transmission, Atmosphere, Vol: 12, Pages: 1-19, ISSN: 2073-4433
A series of experiments was undertaken on an intercity train carriage aimed at providing a “proof of concept” for three methods in improving our understanding of airflow behaviour and the accompanied dispersion of exhaled droplets. The methods used included the following: measuring CO2 concentrations as a proxy for exhaled breath, measuring the concentrations of different size fractions of aerosol particles released from a nebuliser, and visualising the flow patterns at cross-sections of the carriage by using a fog machine and lasers. Each experiment succeeded in providing practical insights into the risk of airborne transmission. For example, it was shown that the carriage is not well mixed over its length, however, it is likely to be well mixed along its height and width. A discussion of the suitability of the fresh air supply rates on UK train carriages is also provided, drawing on the CO2 concentrations measured during these experiments.
ApSimon H, Oxley T, Woodward H, et al., 2021, The UK Integrated Assessment Model for source apportionment and air pollution policy applications to PM2.5, Environment International, Vol: 153, ISSN: 0160-4120
Source apportionment and the effect of reducing individual sources is important input for the development of strategies to address air pollution. The UK Integrated Assessment Model, UKIAM, has been developed for this purpose as a flexible framework, combining information from different atmospheric dispersion models to cover different pollutant contributions, and span the range from European to local scale. In this paper we describe the UKIAM as developed for SO2, NOx, NH3, PM2.5 and VOCs. We illustrate its versatility and application with assessment of current PM2.5 concentrations and exposure of the UK population, as a case-study that has been used as the starting point to investigate potential improvement towards attainment of the WHO guideline of 10 µg/m3.
Burridge HC, Bhagat RK, Stettler MEJ, et al., 2021, The ventilation of buildings and other mitigating measures for COVID-19: a focus on wintertime, Proceedings of the Royal Society A: Mathematical, Physical and Engineering Sciences, Vol: 477, Pages: 1-31, ISSN: 1364-5021
The year 2020 has seen the emergence of a global pandemic as a result of the disease COVID-19. This report reviews knowledge of the transmission of COVID-19 indoors, examines the evidence for mitigating measures, and considers the implications for wintertime with a focus on ventilation.
Corada K, Woodward H, Alaraj H, et al., 2021, A systematic review of the leaf traits considered to contribute to removal of airborne particulate matter pollution in urban areas, Environmental Pollution, Vol: 269, Pages: 1-13, ISSN: 0269-7491
Global urban planning has promoted green infrastructure (GI) such as street trees, shrubs or other greenspace in order to mitigate air pollution. Although considerable attention has been paid to understanding particulate matter (PM) deposition on GI, there has been little focus on identifying which leaf traits might maximise airborne PM removal. This paper examines existing literature to synthesize the state of knowledge on leaf traits most relevant to PM removal. We systematically reviewed measurement studies that evaluated particulate matter accumulated on leaves on street trees, shrubs green roofs, and green walls, for a variety of leaf traits. Our final selection included 62 papers, most from field studies and a handful from wind tunnel studies. The following were variously promoted as useful traits: coniferous needle leaves; small, rough and textured broadleaves; lanceolate and ovate shapes; waxy coatings, and high-density trichomes. Consideration of these leaf traits, many of which are also associated with drought tolerance, may help to maximise PM capture. Although effective leaf traits were identified, there is no strong or consistent evidence to identify which is the most influential leaf trait in capturing PM. The diversity in sampling methods, wide comparison groups and lack of background PM concentration measures in many studies limited our ability to synthesize results. We found that several ancillary factors contribute to variations in the accumulation of PM on leaves, thus cannot recommend that selection of urban planting species be based primarily on leaf traits. Further research into the vegetation structural features and standardization of the method to measure PM on leaves is needed.
Woodward H, Stettler M, Pavlidis D, et al., 2019, A large eddy simulation of the dispersion of traffic emissions by moving vehicles at an intersection, Atmospheric Environment, Vol: 215, Pages: 1-16, ISSN: 1352-2310
Traffic induced flow within urban areas can have a significant effect on pollution dispersion, particularly for traffic emissions. Traffic movement results in increased turbulence within the street and the dispersion of pollutants by vehicles as they move through the street. In order to accurately model urban air quality and perform meaningful exposure analysis at the microscale, these effects cannot be ignored. In this paper we introduce a method to simulate traffic induced dispersion at high resolution. The computational fluid dynamics software, Fluidity, is used to model the moving vehicles through a domain consisting of an idealised intersection. A multi-fluid method is used where vehicles are represented as a second fluid which displaces the air as it moves through the domain. The vehicle model is coupled with an instantaneous emissions model which calculates the emission rate of each vehicle at each time step. A comparison is made with a second Fluidity model which simulates the traffic emissions as a line source and does not include moving vehicles. The method is used to demonstrate how moving vehicles can have a significant effect on street level concentration fields and how large vehicles such as buses can also cause acute high concentration events at the roadside which can contribute significantly to overall exposure.
Woodward WH, Utyuzhnikov S, Massin P, 2018, Developments of the method of difference potentials for linear elastic fracture mechanics problems, INTERNATIONAL JOURNAL FOR NUMERICAL METHODS IN ENGINEERING, Vol: 115, Pages: 75-98, ISSN: 0029-5981
Song J, Fan S, Lin W, et al., 2018, Natural ventilation in cities: the implications of fluid mechanics, BUILDING RESEARCH AND INFORMATION, Vol: 46, Pages: 809-828, ISSN: 0961-3218
Woodward WH, Utyuzhnikov S, Massin P, 2015, On the application of the method of difference potentials to linear elastic fracture mechanics, International Journal for Numerical Methods in Engineering, Vol: 103, Pages: 703-736, ISSN: 0029-5981
<jats:title>Summary</jats:title><jats:p>The Difference Potential Method (DPM) proved to be a very efficient tool for solving boundary value problems (BVPs) in the case of complex geometries. It allows BVPs to be reduced to a boundary equation without the knowledge of Green's functions. The method has been successfully used for solving very different problems related to the solution of partial differential equations. However, it has mostly been considered in regular (Lipschitz) domains. In the current paper, for the first time, the method has been applied to a problem of linear elastic fracture mechanics. This problem requires solving BVPs in domains containing cracks. For the first time, DPM technology has been combined with the finite element method. Singular enrichment functions, such as those used within the extended finite element formulations, are introduced into the system in order to improve the approximation of the crack tip singularity. Near‐optimal convergence rates are achieved with the application of these enrichment functions. For the DPM, the reduction of the BVP to a boundary equation is based on generalised surface projections. The projection is fully determined by the clear trace. In the current paper, for the first time, the minimal clear trace for such problems has been numerically realised for a domain with a cut. Copyright © 2015 John Wiley & Sons, Ltd.</jats:p>
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