Particulate matter (PM)

Airborne PM includes a wide range of particle sizes and different chemical constituents. It consists of both primary components, which are emitted directly into the atmosphere, and secondary components, which are formed within the atmosphere as a result of chemical reactions. Of greatest concern to public health are the particles small enough to be inhaled into the deepest parts of the lung. Air Quality Objectives are in place for the protection of human health for PM10 and PM2.5 – particles of less than 10 and 2.5 micrometres in diameter, respectively.

(Definition take from the Defra Glossary