Assessment of modeled mercury dry deposition over the Great Lakes region

L. Zhang, P. Blanchard, D. Johnson, A. Dastoor, A. Ryzhkov, C. J. Lin, K. Vijayaraghavan, D. Gay, T. M. Holsen, J. Huang, J. A. Graydon, V. L. St. Louis, M. S. Castro, E. K. Miller, F. Marsik, J. Lu, L. Poissant, M. Pilote, K. M. Zhang

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review


Three sets of model predicted values for speciated mercury concentrations and dry deposition fluxes over the Great Lakes region were assessed using field measurements and model intercomparisons. The model predicted values were produced by the Community Multiscale Air Quality Modeling System for the year 2002 (CMAQ2002) and for the year 2005 (CMAQ2005) and by the Global/Regional Atmospheric Heavy Metals Model for the year 2005 (GRAHM2005). Median values of the surface layer ambient concentration of gaseous elemental mercury (GEM) from all three models were generally within 30% of measurements. However, all three models overpredicted surface-layer concentrations of gaseous oxidized mercury (GOM) and particulate bound mercury (PBM) by a factor of 2-10 at the majority of the 15 monitoring locations. For dry deposition of GOM plus PBM, CMAQ2005 showed a clear gradient with the highest deposition in Pennsylvania and its surrounding areas while GRAHM2005 showed no such gradient in this region; however, GRAHM2005 had more hot spots than those of CMAQ2005. Predicted dry deposition of GOM plus PBM from these models should be treated as upper-end estimates over some land surfaces in this region based on the tendencies of all the models to overpredict GOM and PBM concentrations when compared to field measurements. Model predicted GEM dry deposition was found to be as important as GOM plus PBM dry deposition as a contributor to total dry deposition. Predicted total annual mercury dry deposition were mostly lower than 5 μg m -2 to the surface of the Great lakes, between 5 and 15 μg m -2 to the land surface north of the US/Canada border, and between 5 and 40 μg m -2 to the land surface south of the US/Canada border. Predicted dry deposition from different models differed from each other by as much as a factor of 2 at regional scales and by a greater extent at local scales.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)272-283
Number of pages12
JournalEnvironmental Pollution
StatePublished - Feb 2012
Externally publishedYes


  • Atmospheric deposition
  • Model evaluation
  • Model inter-comparison
  • Speciated mercury

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Toxicology
  • Pollution
  • Health, Toxicology and Mutagenesis


Dive into the research topics of 'Assessment of modeled mercury dry deposition over the Great Lakes region'. Together they form a unique fingerprint.

Cite this