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A comparative validation of the ram and ptmtp models for short term sulfur di oxide concentrations in 2 urban areas



A comparative validation of the ram and ptmtp models for short term sulfur di oxide concentrations in 2 urban areas



Journal of the Air Pollution Control Association 28(9): 907-910



A comprehensive and comparative model validation of 2 EPA [Environmental Protection Agency] models for short-term SO2 concentrations was performed. The 2 models tested were RAM (Urban version) and PTMTP (Terrain version). Both are multiple source, multiple receptor gaussian plume models, recommended in the EPA Guideline On Air Quality Models. The principal difference between the 2 models is in their use of empirical dispersion coefficients. It was because of the potential for markedly different predicted maximum SO2 concentrations, and the absence of any testing data on the RAM model, that the validation analysis was undertaken. The current study utilized a full year of air quality data from monitoring sites in 2 Indiana [USA] cities, Michigan City and Indianapolis. Cumulative frequency distributions for each site and model were prepared and comparisons made. The RAM (Urban) model was highly inaccurate in predicting maximum short-term SO2 concentrations. The PTMTP model, although conservative in its estimates, produced results which more closely resemble the distribution of observed SO2 concentrations. The body of information presented was directed to environmental scientists responsible for air quality modeling, and to those persons who set policy on the use of models in air quality studies.

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