The paper on Individual-Level Exposure Assessment to Airborne Particulate Matter during Periods of Atmospheric Thermal Inversion by Rok Novak, Tjaša Kanduč, and David Kocman was featured on the main page of the Sensors journal, recognizing the importance of the paper in the field.
Authors assessed activity-specific and general indoor and outdoor exposure during and after a period of high concentrations of particulate matter (PM), e.g., an atmospheric thermal inversion (ATI) in the Ljubljana subalpine basin. Personal particulate matter monitors were used, worn by participants of the H2020 ICARUS sampling campaigns in spring 2019 who also recorded their hourly activities. Results showed that indoor and outdoor exposure to PM was significantly higher during the ATI period and that the difference between mean indoor and outdoor exposure to PM was much higher during the ATI period (23.0 µg/m3) than after (6.5 µg/m3). Indoor activities generally were associated with smaller differences, with cooking and cleaning even having higher values in the post-ATI period. On the other hand, all outdoor activities had higher PM values during the ATI than after, with larger differences, mostly >30.0 µg/m3. Overall, this work demonstrated that an individual-level approach can provide better spatiotemporal resolution and evaluate the relative importance of specific high-exposure events, and in this way provide an ancillary tool for exposure assessments.