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Trifluoroacetate in Precipitation: Deriving a Benchmark Data Set

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journal contribution
posted on 02.09.2020 by Finnian Freeling, David Behringer, Felix Heydel, Marco Scheurer, Thomas A. Ternes, Karsten Nödler
Although precipitation is considered to be the most important diffuse source of trifluoroacetate (TFA) to the nonmarine environment, information regarding the wet deposition of TFA as well as general data on the spatial and temporal variations in TFA concentration in precipitation is scarce. This is the first study to provide a comprehensive overview of the occurrence of TFA in precipitation by a systematic and nation-wide field monitoring campaign. In total, 1187 precipitation samples, which were collected over the course of 12 consecutive months at eight locations across Germany, were analyzed. The median, the estimated average, and the precipitation-weighted average TFA concentration of all analyzed wet deposition samples were 0.210, 0.703, and 0.335 μg/L, respectively. For Germany, an annual wet deposition flux of 190 μg/m2 or approximately 68 t was calculated for the sampling period from February 2018 to January 2019. The campaign revealed a pronounced seasonality of the TFA concentration and wet deposition flux of collected samples. Correlation analysis suggested an enhanced transformation of TFA precursors in the troposphere in the summertime due to higher concentrations of photochemically generated oxidants such as hydroxyl radicals, ultimately leading to an enhanced atmospheric deposition of TFA during summer.