Internal combustion engines such as reciprocating internal combustion engines produce air pollution emissions, due to incomplete combustion of carbonaceous fuel. The main derivatives of the process are carbon dioxide CO2, water and some soot — also called particulate matter (PM). The effects of inhaling particulate matter have been studied in humans and animals and include asthma, lung cancer, cardiovascular issues, and premature death. There are, however, some additional products of the combustion process that include nitrogen oxides and sulfur and some uncombusted hydrocarbons, depending on the operating conditions and the fuel-air ratio.
Not all of the fuel is completely consumed by the combustion process; a small amount of fuel is present after combustion, and some of it reacts to form oxygenates, such as formaldehyde or acetaldehyde, or hydrocarbons not originally present in the input fuel mixture. Incomplete combustion usually results from insufficient oxygen to achieve the perfect stoichiometric ratio. The flame is "quenched" by the relatively cool cylinder walls, leaving behind unreacted fuel that is expelled with the exhaust. When running at lower speeds, quenching is commonly observed in diesel (compression ignition) engines that run on natural gas. Quenching reduces efficiency and increases knocking, sometimes causing the engine to stall. Incomplete combustion also leads to the production of carbon monoxide (CO). Further chemicals released are benzene and 1,3-butadiene that are also hazardous air pollutants.
Increasing the amount of air in the engine reduces emissions of incomplete combustion products, but also promotes reaction between oxygen and nitrogen in the air to produce nitrogen oxides (NOx). NOx is hazardous to both plant and animal health, and leads to the production of ozone (O3). Ozone is not emitted directly; rather, it is a secondary air pollutant, produced in the atmosphere by the reaction of NO"x" and volatile organic compounds in the presence of sunlight. Ground-level ozone is harmful to human health and the environment. Though the same chemical substance, ground-level ozone should not be confused with stratospheric ozone, or the ozone layer, which protects the earth from harmful ultraviolet rays.
Carbon fuels contain sulfur and impurities that eventually produce sulfur monoxides (SO) and sulfur dioxide (SO2) in the exhaust, which promotes acid rain.
In the United States, nitrogen oxides, PM, carbon monoxide, sulphur dioxide, and ozone, are regulated as criteria air pollutants under the Clean Air Act to levels at which human health and welfare are protected. Other pollutants, such as benzene and 1,3-butadiene, are regulated as hazardous air pollutants whose emissions must be lowered as much as possible depending on technological and practical considerations.
Other articles related to "air pollution, air, pollution":
... Air pollution often travels from its source in one state to another state ... in one state and work or shop in another air pollution from cars and trucks may spread throughout the interstate area ... The 1990 Clean Air Act provides for interstate commissions on air pollution control, which are to develop regional strategies for cleaning up air pollution ...
... The Protocol is part of the Convention on Long-Range Transboundary Air Pollution ... health and the natural environment from air pollution by control and reduction of air pollution, including long-range transboundary air pollution ...
... Although the 1990 Clean Air Act is a federal law covering the entire country, the states do much of the work to carry out the Act ... For example, a state air pollution agency holds a hearing on a permit application by a power or chemical plant or fines a company for violating air pollution limits ... law recognizes that states should lead in carrying out the Clean Air Act, because pollution control problems often require special understanding of local industries, geography, housing patterns, etc ...
... Since 1993 the London Air Quality Network of King's College London has coordinated the monitoring of air pollution across 30 London boroughs and Heathrow, and has noted that in 2005–06 ... In 2000 one measuring site exceeded EU limits for air pollution, pollution rose for two years prior to 2007 ... report that nine sites in London exceed the EU limits for air pollution in 2007 (up was one in 2002) ...
... Other greenhouse gases include methane, hydrofluorocarbons, perfluorocarbons, chlorofluorocarbons, nitrogen oxides, and ozone ... This effect has been understood by scientists for about a century, and technological advancements during this period have helped increase the breadth and depth of data relating to the phenomenon ...
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