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Tongji team estimates vehicle emission factors in Shanghai with MOVES and GPS data

A team from Tongji University in China has generated comprehensive emission factors (functional relations between pollutant emissions and the activity that causes them) for Shanghai, China light-duty vehicles at various average speed levels. Emission factors for hydrocarbons, carbon monoxide, and NOx of in-use light vehicles were 0.1 to 0.25 g/km; 4 to 7 g/km; and 0.4 to 0.8 g/km, respectively. These amounts are 15, 1.9, and 5.9 times higher than those in the United States, respectively.

The Tongji team used the MOVES (Motor Vehicle Emission Simulator) model, released by the US Environmental Protection Agency (EPA)—revising the emissions inventory according to China’s vehicle emission standards—to generate the emission factors. To achieve a convincing emission result, they extracted vehicle operation from massive taxi Global Positioning System (GPS) data.

By 2012, the China Environmental Protection Bureau had established 10 monitoring sites in Shanghai and released data for real-time concentrations of particulate matter less than 2.5 μm in diameter, particulate matter less than 10 μm in diameter, nitrogen dioxide (NO2), and sulfur dioxide to the public.

Using the EPB data, a field study estimating near-road air quality was conducted with MOVES and the air dispersion model AERMOD. The concentration result shows that the accuracy of near-road NO2 estimation is improved with taxi GPS data and the revised MOVES emission inventory. The study explores the extended application of MOVES by offering a procedure for applying MOVES in non-US regions.

A paper on their work is published in Transportation Research Record: Journal of the Transportation Research Board.


  • Haobing Liu, Xiaohong Chen, Yuqin Wang, Shu Han (2013) Vehicle Emission and Near-Road Air Quality Modeling for Shanghai, China Based on Global Positioning System Data from Taxis and Revised MOVES Emission Inventory. Transportation Research Record: Journal of the Transportation Research Board doi: 10.3141/2340-05


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