Automobile Emissions Essay Research Paper ABSTRACTPollution from

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Automobile Emissions Essay, Research Paper ABSTRACT Pollution from automobile emissions has become over the past few decades an issue of great concern. With a growing number of motor vehicles on our roads great concern has been attributed to the effects of these emissions to our health and to the environment. Several of the gases emitted, which when present in certain concentrations in our atmosphere can be toxic, therefor these ultimate concentrations must never be achieved. Strict legislation as well as sophisticated control technology has been implemented in the automotive industry in order to limit the pollution caused. These aspects of automotive pollution shall be further discussed in this paper. KEYWORDS: Pollution, Car Pollution, Automotive emissions, Emission gases,

Catalysts 1. INTRODUCTION The relationship between air pollution and automobile exhaust emissions has been established largely due to studies done in California. At first the problem was believed to be a combination of smoke and fog, which was similar to problems faced in London since the middle ages. In Los Angeles the severity of air pollution has caused vegetation damage, eye and throat irritation, a decrease in visibility as well as several other effects. Automobile and truck exhausts contain substances which can adversely affect human health when exposed to concentrations above ambient level. Emissions from automobiles usually consist of carbon monoxides, oxides from sulfur and nitrogen, unburned hydrocarbons, smog, and particulate matter, which includes smoke. Pollutant

concentration and time of exposure are the two main factors which affect human health. Air emissions from automobiles can also have an overall effect on the environmental quality in several ways. Emissions from nitrogen oxides (NOx) can contribute to the acid deposition problem, combinations of NOx and hydrocarbons can help produce ozone and photochemical oxidants and lastly pollutants from automobiles and ozone formation can contribute to the ambient air pollution problem in urban areas. As a result of increasing concern about the role of the motor vehicle in contributing to these health and environmental problems as well as the possibility of these problems to increase due to a growing number of cars worldwide, strict legislation has caused engine emission control technology to

quickly develop. As legislations become more severe, emission control technology is constantly changed or modified in order to meet the new requirements and reduce the emissions produced. This report shall focus on the health effects that automotive emissions such as gases and particulates may have as well as discuss the control of these emissions via legislation and technology. The technology discussed is primarily the present technology implemented to control automotive emissions, namely catalysts. 2. HEALTH EFFECTS OF AUTOMOTIVE EMISSIONS 2.1 EFFECTS OF GASEOUS EMISSIONS 2.1.1 Carbon Monoxide Carbon monoxide (CO) is found in high levels in the exhausts of diesel and petrol powered automobiles. CO is a colorless and odorless gas and can be toxic at certain levels. The effects

of carbon monoxide is felt when inhaled, it enters the blood stream and binds to hemoglobin (which the CO has a higher affinity than oxygen by 240 to 1). The resulting compound formed is carboxlhemoglobin. The blood is then unable to supply oxygen to the cells. And depending the level of exposure, death may be the ultimate consequence. The formation of carboxlhemoglobin lowers the available hemoglobin. Normal individuals will not feel any effects until 5% to 10% of hemoglobin is transformed. As carboxlhemoglobin increases, symptoms such as headaches, visual disturbances, nausea and vomiting and coma may occur. Death may occur if levels of carboxlhemoglobin reach the vicinity of 70%. Usually levels of carbon monoxide are low except in enclosed areas. On average most