A case study of indoor pollution by Chinese cooking

E. Benfenati, P. Pierucci, D. Niego

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review


Indoor air monitoring is very important for two main reasons: the long time spent inside buildings in Western life and the possible link between exposure to volatile organic compounds (VOC), even at low concentrations, and health effects. We consider here a case of indoor pollution, due to Chinese cooking. Chinese cooking includes frying in woks, special pans in which foods and fats are heated to temperatures (240-280°C) at which some molecules decompose to volatile products. Two different methods for qualitative analysis of these products were tested, both using GC-MS for separation and identification. With the first method air is sampled with carbon molecular sieve cartridges and analytes eluted with an appropriate solvent. The second method, the most successful, involves direct exposure of a solid phase microextraction (SPME) fiber in the polluted area, which provides both sampling and concentration of analytes. SPME coupled with GC-MS is a powerful technique for the identification of VOC responsible for indoor air pollution.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)217-224
Number of pages8
JournalToxicological and Environmental Chemistry
Issue number1-4
Publication statusPublished - 1998


  • Cooking
  • Indoor pollution
  • SPME
  • VOCs

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Environmental Science(all)
  • Environmental Chemistry
  • Health, Toxicology and Mutagenesis
  • Toxicology


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