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Total Carbon

Total Carbon (TC) refers to the cumulative amount of elemental carbon and organic carbon present within diesel particulate matter (DPM). It serves as a crucial metric for assessing the composition and characteristics of diesel exhaust emissions.

Total Carbon (TC) represents the combined quantity of elemental carbon (EC) and organic carbon (OC) contained within diesel particulates. These carbonaceous components are major constituents of particulate matter emitted from diesel engines.


  1. Elemental Carbon (EC): Elemental carbon refers to the pure carbon fraction of diesel particulate matter, resulting from incomplete combustion of diesel fuel. It consists of carbon atoms bonded together in a crystalline structure, often forming black soot particles.
  2. Organic Carbon (OC): Organic carbon encompasses the carbonaceous compounds derived from the incomplete combustion of hydrocarbons present in diesel fuel. These compounds include a variety of organic molecules, such as polycyclic aromatic hydrocarbons (PAHs), aldehydes, and other volatile organic compounds (VOCs).

Total Carbon serves as a critical indicator of the overall carbon content within diesel particulate emissions. By quantifying the combined mass of elemental carbon and organic carbon, it provides valuable insights into the composition, sources, and potential health effects of diesel exhaust particulates.

Measurement and Analysis:
Total Carbon content in diesel particulate matter is typically determined through laboratory analysis techniques, such as thermal-optical analysis (TOA) or combustion analysis. These methods involve heating the particulate samples under controlled conditions to quantify the carbon content based on its thermal behavior and combustion characteristics.

Typical Percentage:
Total Carbon content typically constitutes a significant proportion of the total mass of diesel particulate matter, ranging from approximately 80% to 85%. This indicates that the majority of DPM mass is comprised of carbonaceous components, primarily elemental carbon and organic carbon.

Understanding the Total Carbon content in diesel exhaust emissions is essential for assessing air quality, evaluating emission control technologies, and formulating regulatory policies aimed at reducing particulate emissions and mitigating associated health risks.

In summary, Total Carbon (TC) represents the collective mass of elemental carbon and organic carbon present within diesel particulate matter. It serves as a fundamental parameter for characterizing diesel exhaust emissions and is instrumental in efforts to monitor and mitigate the environmental and health impacts associated with diesel engine combustion.

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