Characterization of atmospheric contaminant sources using adaptive evolutionary algorithms

Guido Cervone, Pasquale Franzese, Adrian Grajdeanu

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

20 Scopus citations


The characteristics of an unknown source of emissions in the atmosphere are identified using an Adaptive Evolutionary Strategy (AES) methodology based on ground concentration measurements and a Gaussian plume model. The AES methodology selects an initial set of source characteristics including position, size, mass emission rate, and wind direction, from which a forward dispersion simulation is performed. The error between the simulated concentrations from the tentative source and the observed ground measurements is calculated. Then the AES algorithm prescribes the next tentative set of source characteristics. The iteration proceeds towards minimum error, corresponding to convergence towards the real source.The proposed methodology was used to identify the source characteristics of 12 releases from the Prairie Grass field experiment of dispersion, two for each atmospheric stability class, ranging from very unstable to stable atmosphere. The AES algorithm was found to have advantages over a simple canonical ES and a Monte Carlo (MC) method which were used as benchmarks.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)3787-3796
Number of pages10
JournalAtmospheric Environment
Issue number31
StatePublished - Oct 2010

All Science Journal Classification (ASJC) codes

  • Environmental Science(all)
  • Atmospheric Science


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