Evaluating the emissions from heavy-duty construction equipment.
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Evaluating the emissions from heavy-duty construction equipment.

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      Gaseous and particle emissions from construction engines are an important fraction of the total air pollutants and are gaining increasing regulatory attention. Quantification of NOx and PM is necessary to inventory the contribution of the construction equipment, such as used by Caltrans, to atmospheric loadings, particularly for those projects in non-attainment or maintenance areas. At present, however, there is no model mutually accepted by Caltrans and regulatory agencies that can be used for the estimation of construction emissions or the development of appropriate regulations. This is due in part to a lack of emissions data from construction equipment under in-use operating conditions. The lack of a sound scientific basis for regulation has resulted in legal cases and other obstacles that could potentially delay or inhibit important transportation projects. The goal of this research program was to carry out initial construction equipment emissions testing and to develop an emissions model for construction equipment based on these in-use emissions measurements. The program included two main aspects: 1) in-field emissions and activity measurements; and 2) model development and validation. The emissions measurements were made on a second-by-second basis using a portable emissions measurement system (PEMS) to develop relationships between NOx and PM and other emissions and fuel use. These emissions data were subsequently used in the development of a model that allows the determination of emissions from different pieces of construction equipment or for construction projects as a whole.
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