Distance-Based Emission Factors from Vehicle Emission Remote Sensing Measurements

J. Davison, Yoann Bernard, J. Borken-Kleefeld, Naomi J. Farren, Stefan Hausberger, Ake Sjödin, James Tate, Adam R. Vaughan, David C. Carslow

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review


Vehicle emission remote sensing has the potential to provide detailed emissions information at a highly disaggregated level owing to the ability to measure thousands of vehicles in a single day. Fundamentally, vehicle emission remote sensing provides a direct measure of the molar volume ratio of a pollutant to carbon dioxide, from which fuel-based emissions factors can readily be calculated. However, vehicle emissions are more commonly expressed in emission per unit distance travelled e.g. grams per km or mile. To express vehicle emission remote sensing data in this way requires an estimate of the fuel consumption at the time of the emission measurement. In this paper, an approach is developed based on vehicle specific power that uses commonly measured or easily obtainable vehicle information such as vehicle speed, acceleration and mass. We test the approach against 55 independent comprehensive PEMS measurements for Euro 5 and 6 gasoline and diesel vehicles over a wide range of driving conditions and find good agreement between the method and PEMS data. The method is applied to individual vehicle model types to quantify distance-based emission factors. The method will be appropriate for application to larger vehicle emission remote sensing databases, thus extending real-world distance-based vehicle emissions information.

Original languageEnglish
Article number139688
JournalScience of the Total Environment
Issue numberSTOTEN-D-20-02161
Publication statusPublished - 15 Oct 2020


  • Emission factors
  • PEMS
  • Remote sensing
  • Vehicle emissions

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Pollution
  • Waste Management and Disposal
  • Environmental Engineering
  • Environmental Chemistry


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