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Characterization Emissions from Open Combustion of Cheatgrass (Bromus Tectorum)
AuthorRennie, Megan R. J.
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Cheatgrass (Bromus Tectorum) is a highly invasive species dominant in the Great Basin of the Western United States. Early spring growth combined with early summer drying supplies large amounts of highly flammable fuel to sagebrush and other ecosystems increasing the frequency and intensity of wildland fires. Despite the importance of cheatgrass for the fire ecology of large parts of the western U.S., emission factors (EF) for its combustion are largely unknown. The fresh smoke from 12 open laboratory burns of cheatgrass has been analyzed using real-time measurements. Here, we present measured optical properties, absorption Ångström exponents (AAE), scattering Ångström exponents (SAE), and the single scattering albedos (SSA) of the emitted smoke. We also quantify gaseous elemental mercury (GEM) emission factors from the laboratory combustion of cheatgrass and show that cheatgrass EFs are comparable to those of other grasses.