An ASPEN (Assessment System for Population Exposure Nationwide) model: is a computer simulation model used to estimate toxic air pollutant concentrations. The ASPEN model takes into account important determinants of pollutant concentrations, such as: rate of release, location of release, the height from which the pollutants are released, wind speeds and directions from the meteorological stations nearest to the release, breakdown of the pollutants in the atmosphere after being released (i.e., reactive decay), settling of pollutants out of the atmosphere (i.e., deposition), and transformation of one pollutant into another (i.e., secondary formation). The model estimates toxic air pollutant concentrations for every census tract in the continental United States, Puerto Rico and the Virgin Islands. However, the output for the model is presented at the county level. For more detailed information, see ASPEN Model.
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