Document Type


Date of Award


Degree Name

Master of Science in Environmental Science - (M.S.)


Chemical Engineering, Chemistry and Environmental Science

First Advisor

Barbara B. Kebbekus

Second Advisor

Ching-Rong Huang

Third Advisor

Richard B. Trattner


Formaldehyde has been shown in the laboratory to play a critical role in the chemistry of polluted air. The method which we discuss in this paper was evaluated under practical field conditions in the Northern New Jersey Staten Island Urban Air Toxics Project. Formaldehyde in ambient air is concentrated and derived by passing a known quantity of air through a silica column impregnated with 2,4-dinitrophenylhydrazine (DNPH). The silica is eluted with acetonitrile and the concentration of formaldehyde is determined by High Performance Liquid Chromatograph (HPLC) with UV detection. A description of procedural details for coating silica cartridges with 2,4-DNPH acidified with hydrochloric acid, the preparation of calibration standards, analytical testing, a series experiments of quality control and assurance and the results of atmospheric sampling in Carteret and Elizabeth are included.