Open Science Research Excellence

Open Science Index

Commenced in January 2007 Frequency: Monthly Edition: International Paper Count: 20

Application of Sorptive Passive Panels for Reducing Indoor Formaldehyde Level: Effect of Environmental Conditions

Reducing formaldehyde concentration in residential buildings is an important challenge, especially during the summer. In this study, a ceiling tile was used as a sorptive passive panel for formaldehyde removal. The performance of this passive panel was evaluated under different environmental conditions. The results demonstrated that the removal efficiency is comprised between 40% and 71%. Change in the level of relative humidity (30%, 50%, and 75%) had a slight positive effect on the sorption capacity. However, increase in temperature from 21 °C to 26 °C led to approximately 7% decrease in the average formaldehyde removal performance. GC/MS and HPLC analysis revealed the formation of different by-products at low concentrations under extreme environmental conditions. These findings suggest that the passive panel selected for this study holds the potential to be used for formaldehyde removal under various conditions.

The IVAIRE Study: Relative Performance of Energy and Heat Recovery Ventilators in Cold Climates
This paper describes the results obtained in a two-year randomized intervention field study investigating the impact of ventilation rates on indoor air quality (IAQ) and the respiratory health of asthmatic children in Québec City, Canada. The focus of this article is on the comparative effectiveness of heat recovery ventilators (HRVs) and energy recovery ventilators (ERVs) at increasing ventilation rates, improving IAQ, and maintaining an acceptable indoor relative humidity (RH). In 14% of the homes, the RH was found to be too low in winter. Providing more cold and dry outside air to under-ventilated homes in winter further reduces indoor RH. Thus, low-RH homes in the intervention group were chosen to receive ERVs (instead of HRVs) to increase the ventilation rate. The installation of HRVs or ERVs led to a near doubling of the ventilation rates in the intervention group homes which led to a significant reduction in the concentration of several key of pollutants. The ERVs were also effective in maintaining an acceptable indoor RH since they avoided excessive dehumidification of the home by recovering moisture from the exhaust airstream through the enthalpy core, otherwise associated with increased cold supply air rates.
Evaluation of Negative Air Ions in Bioaerosol Removal: Indoor Concentration of Airborne Bacterial and Fungal in Residential Building in Qom City, Iran

The present investigation was conducted to detect the type and concentrations of bacterial and fungal bioaerosols in one room (bedroom) of each selected residential building located in different regions of Qom during February 2015 (n=9) to July 2016 (n=11). Moreover, we evaluated the efficiency of negative air ions (NAIs) in bioaerosol reduction in indoor air in residential buildings. In the first step, the mean concentrations of bacterial and fungal in nine sampling sites evaluated in winter were 744 and 579 colony forming units (CFU)/m3, while these values were 1628.6 and 231 CFU/m3 in the 11 sampling sites evaluated in summer, respectively. The most predominant genera between bacterial and fungal in all sampling sites were detected as Micrococcus spp. and Staphylococcus spp. and also, Aspergillus spp. and Penicillium spp., respectively. The 95% and 45% of sampling sites have bacterial and fungal concentrations over the recommended levels, respectively. In the removal step, we achieved a reduction with a range of 38% to 93% for bacterial genera and 25% to 100% for fungal genera by using NAIs. The results suggested that NAI is a highly effective, simple and efficient technique in reducing the bacterial and fungal concentration in the indoor air of residential buildings.

Existence of Nano-Organic Carbon Particles below the Size Range of 10 nm in the Indoor Air Environment

Indoor air environment is a big concern in the last few decades in the developing countries, with increased focus on monitoring the air quality. In this work, an experimental study has been conducted to establish the existence of carbon nanoparticles below the size range of 10 nm in the non-sooting zone of a LPG/air partially premixed flame. Mainly, four optical techniques, UV absorption spectroscopy, fluorescence spectroscopy, dynamic light scattering and TEM have been used to characterize and measure the size of carbon nanoparticles in the sampled materials collected from the inner surface of the flame front. The existence of the carbon nanoparticles in the sampled material has been confirmed with the typical nature of the absorption and fluorescence spectra already reported in the literature. The band gap energy shows that the particles are made up of three to six aromatic rings. The size measurement by DLS technique also shows that the particles below the size range of 10 nm. The results of DLS are also corroborated by the TEM image of the same material. 

Influence of Orientation in Complex Building Architecture in Various Climatic Regions in Winter

It is architecturally accepted that building form and design is considered as one of the most important aspects in affecting indoor temperature. The total area of building plan might be identical, but the design will have a major influence on the total area of external walls. This will have a clear impact on the amount of heat exchange with outdoor. Moreover, it will affect the position and area of glazing system. This has not received enough consideration in research by the specialists, since most of the publications are highlighting the impact of building envelope in terms of physical heat transfer in buildings. This research will investigate the impact of orientation of various building forms in various climatic regions. It will be concluded that orientation and glazing to wall ratio were recognized to be the most effective variables despite the shape of the building. However, linear ad radial forms were found more appropriate shapes almost across the continent.

Indoor Air Pollution of the Flexographic Printing Environment

The identification and evaluation of organic and inorganic pollutants were performed in a flexographic facility in Novi Sad, Serbia. Air samples were collected and analyzed in situ, during 4-hours working time at five sampling points by the mobile gas chromatograph and ozonometer at the printing of collagen casing. Experimental results showed that the concentrations of isopropyl alcohol, acetone, total volatile organic compounds and ozone varied during the sampling times. The highest average concentrations of 94.80 ppm and 102.57 ppm were achieved at 200 minutes from starting the production for isopropyl alcohol and total volatile organic compounds, respectively. The mutual dependences between target hazardous and microclimate parameters were confirmed using a multiple linear regression model with software package STATISTICA 10. Obtained multiple coefficients of determination in the case of ozone and acetone (0.507 and 0.589) with microclimate parameters indicated a moderate correlation between the observed variables. However, a strong positive correlation was obtained for isopropyl alcohol and total volatile organic compounds (0.760 and 0.852) with microclimate parameters. Higher values of parameter F than Fcritical for all examined dependences indicated the existence of statistically significant difference between the concentration levels of target pollutants and microclimates parameters. Given that, the microclimate parameters significantly affect the emission of investigated gases and the application of eco-friendly materials in production process present a necessity.

Characterization of the Airtightness Level in School Classrooms in Mediterranean Climate
An analysis of the air tightness level is performed on a representative sample of school classrooms in Southern Spain, which allows knowing the infiltration level of these classrooms, mainly through its envelope, which can affect both energy demand and occupant's thermal comfort. By using a pressurization/depressurization equipment (Blower-Door test), a characterization of 45 multipurpose classrooms have been performed in nine non-university educational institutions of the main climate zones of Southern Spain. In spite of having two doors and a high ratio between glass surface and outer surface, it is possible to see in these classrooms that there is an adequate level of airtightness, since all the n50 values obtained are lower than 9.0 ACH, with an average value around 7.0 ACH.
Optimal Trajectory Finding of IDP Ventilation Control with Outdoor Air Information and Indoor Health Risk Index

This study was carried out for an underground subway station at Seoul Metro, Korea. The optimal set-points of the ventilation control system are determined every 3 hours, then, the ventilation controller adjusts the ventilation fan speed according to the optimal set-point changes. Compared to manual ventilation system which is operated irrespective of the OAQ, the IDP-based ventilation control system saves 3.7% of the energy consumption. Compared to the fixed set-point controller which is operated irrespective of the IAQ diurnal variation, the IDP-based controller shows better performance with a 2% decrease in energy consumption, maintaining the comfortable IAQ range inside the station.

Non-Methane Hydrocarbons Emission during the Photocopying Process
Prosperity of electronic equipment in photocopying environment not only has improved work efficiency, but also has changed indoor air quality. Considering the number of photocopying employed, indoor air quality might be worse than in general office environments. Determining the contribution from any type of equipment to indoor air pollution is a complex matter. Non-methane hydrocarbons are known to have an important role on air quality due to their high reactivity. The presence of hazardous pollutants in indoor air has been detected in one photocopying shop in Novi Sad, Serbia. Air samples were collected and analyzed for five days, during 8-hr working time in three time intervals, whereas three different sampling points were determined. Using multiple linear regression model and software package STATISTICA 10 the concentrations of occupational hazards and microclimates parameters were mutually correlated. Based on the obtained multiple coefficients of determination (0.3751, 0.2389 and 0.1975), a weak positive correlation between the observed variables was determined. Small values of parameter F indicated that there was no statistically significant difference between the concentration levels of nonmethane hydrocarbons and microclimates parameters. The results showed that variable could be presented by the general regression model: y = b0 + b1xi1+ b2xi2. Obtained regression equations allow to measure the quantitative agreement between the variables and thus obtain more accurate knowledge of their mutual relations.
A Numerical Simulation of the Indoor Air Flow
The indoor airflow with a mixed natural/forced convection was numerically calculated using the laminar and turbulent approach. The Boussinesq approximation was considered for a simplification of the mathematical model and calculations. The results obtained, such as mean velocity fields, were successfully compared with experimental PIV flow visualizations. The effect of the distance between the cooled wall and the heat exchanger on the temperature and velocity distributions was calculated. In a room with a simple shape, the computational code OpenFOAM demonstrated an ability to numerically predict flow patterns. Furthermore, numerical techniques, boundary type conditions and the computational grid quality were examined. Calculations using the turbulence model k-omega had a significant effect on the results influencing temperature and velocity distributions.
Comparison of Indoor and Outdoor Air Quality in Children Homes at Prenatal Period and One Year Old
Abstract–Indoor air (VOCs) samples were collected simultaneously from variety of indoors (e.g. living rooms, baby-s rooms) and outdoor environments which were voluntarily selected from the houses in which pregnant residents live throughout Ankara. This is the first comprehensive study done in Turkey starting from prenatal period and continued till the babies had one year old. VOCs levels were measured over 76 homes. Air samples were collected in Tenax TA sorbent filled tubes with active sampling method and analyzed with Thermal Desorber and Gas Chromatography/Mass spectrometry (TD-GC/MS). At the first sampling period in the baby-s rooms maximum concentration of toluene was measured about 240.77μg.m-3 and in the living rooms maximum concentration of naphthalene was 180.24μg.m-3. At the second sampling period in the baby-s rooms maximum concentration of toluene was measured about 144.97μg.m-3 and in the living rooms maximum concentration of naphthalene was 247.89μg.m-3. Concentration of TVOCs in the first period was generally higher than the second period.
Indoor and Outdoor Concentration of Particulate Matter at Domestic Homes
Particulate matter (PM) in ambient air is responsible for adverse health effects in adults and children. Relatively little is known about the concentrations, sources and health effects of PM in indoor air. A monitoring study was conducted in Ankara by three campaigns in order to measure PM levels in indoor and outdoor environments to identify and quantify associations between sources and concentrations. Approximately 82 homes (1st campaign for 42, 2nd campaign for 12, and 3rd campaign for 28), three rooms (living room, baby-s room and living room used as a baby-s room) and outdoor ambient at each home were sampled with Grimm Environmental Dust Monitoring (EDM) 107, during different seasonal periods of 2011 and 2012. In this study, the relationship between indoor and outdoor PM levels for particulate matter less than 10 micrometer (.m) (PM10), particulate matter less than 2.5.m (PM2.5) and particulate matter less than 1.0.m (PM1) were investigated. The mean concentration of PM10, PM2.5, and PM1.0 at living room used as baby-s room is higher than living and baby-s room (or bedroom) for three sampling campaigns. It is concluded that the household activities and environmental conditions are very important for PM concentrations in the indoor environments during the sampling periods. The amount of smokers, being near a main street and/or construction activities increased the PM concentration. This study is based on the assessment the relationship between indoor and outdoor PM levels and the household activities and environmental conditions
Air Quality in Sports Venues with Distinct Characteristics
In July 2012, an indoor/outdoor monitoring programme was undertaken in two university sports facilities: a fronton and a gymnasium. Comfort parameters (temperature, relative humidity, CO and CO2) and total volatile organic compounds (VOCs) were continuously monitored. Concentrations of NO2, carbonyl compounds and individual VOCs were obtained. Low volume samplers were used to collect particulate matter (PM10). The minimum ventilation rates stipulated for acceptable indoor air quality were observed in both sports facilities. It was found that cleaning activities may have a large influence on the VOC levels. Acrolein was one of the most abundant carbonyl compounds, showing concentrations above the recommended limit. Formaldehyde was detected at levels lower than those commonly reported for other indoor environments. The PM10 concentrations obtained during the occupancy periods ranged between 38 and 43μgm-3 in the fronton and from 154 to 198μgm-3 in the gymnasium.
The Impact of an Air-Supply Guide Vane on the Indoor Air Distribution

Indoor air distribution has great impact on people-s thermal sensation. Therefore, how to remove the indoor excess heat becomes an important issue to create a thermally comfortable indoor environment. To expel the extra indoor heat effectively, this paper used a dynamic CFD approach to study the effect of an air-supply guide vane swinging periodically on the indoor air distribution within a model room. The numerical results revealed that the indoor heat transfer performance caused by the swing guide vane had close relation with the number of vortices developing under the inlet cold jet. At larger swing amplitude, two smaller vortices continued to shed outward under the cold jet and remove the indoor heat load more effectively. As a result, it can be found that the average Nusselt number on the floor increased with the increase of the swing amplitude of the guide vane.

Wireless Building Monitoring and Control System
The building sector is the largest energy consumer and CO2 emitter in the European Union (EU) and therefore the active reduction of energy consumption and elimination of energy wastage are among the main goals in it. Healthy housing and energy efficiency are affected by many factors which set challenges to monitoring, control and research of indoor air quality (IAQ) and energy consumption, especially in old buildings. These challenges include measurement and equipment costs, for example. Additionally, the measurement results are difficult to interpret and their usage in the ventilation control is also limited when taking into account the energy efficiency of housing at the same time. The main goal of this study is to develop a cost-effective building monitoring and control system especially for old buildings. The starting point or keyword of the development process is a wireless system; otherwise the installation costs become too high. As the main result, this paper describes an idea of a wireless building monitoring and control system. The first prototype of the system has been installed in 10 residential buildings and in 10 school buildings located in the City of Kuopio, Finland.
Effects of Energy Consumption on Indoor Air Quality

Continuous measurements and multivariate methods are applied in researching the effects of energy consumption on indoor air quality (IAQ) in a Finnish one-family house. Measured data used in this study was collected continuously in a house in Kuopio, Eastern Finland, during fourteen months long period. Consumption parameters measured were the consumptions of district heat, electricity and water. Indoor parameters gathered were temperature, relative humidity (RH), the concentrations of carbon dioxide (CO2) and carbon monoxide (CO) and differential air pressure. In this study, self-organizing map (SOM) and Sammon's mapping were applied to resolve the effects of energy consumption on indoor air quality. Namely, the SOM was qualified as a suitable method having a property to summarize the multivariable dependencies into easily observable two-dimensional map. Accompanying that, the Sammon's mapping method was used to cluster pre-processed data to find similarities of the variables, expressing distances and groups in the data. The methods used were able to distinguish 7 different clusters characterizing indoor air quality and energy efficiency in the study house. The results indicate, that the cost implications in euros of heating and electricity energy vary according to the differential pressure, concentration of carbon dioxide, temperature and season.

Ventilation Efficiency in the Subway Environment for the Indoor Air Quality

Clean air in subway station is important to passengers. The Platform Screen Doors (PSDs) can improve indoor air quality in the subway station; however the air quality in the subway tunnel is degraded. The subway tunnel has high CO2 concentration and indoor particulate matter (PM) value. The Indoor Air Quality (IAQ) level in subway environment degrades by increasing the frequency of the train operation and the number of the train. The ventilation systems of the subway tunnel need improvements to have better air-quality. Numerical analyses might be effective tools to analyze the performance of subway twin-track tunnel ventilation systems. An existing subway twin-track tunnel in the metropolitan Seoul subway system is chosen for the numerical simulations. The ANSYS CFX software is used for unsteady computations of the airflow inside the twin-track tunnel when the train moves. The airflow inside the tunnel is simulated when one train runs and two trains run at the same time in the tunnel. The piston-effect inside the tunnel is analyzed when all shafts function as the natural ventilation shaft. The supplied air through the shafts is mixed with the pollutant air in the tunnel. The pollutant air is exhausted by the mechanical ventilation shafts. The supplied and discharged airs are balanced when only one train runs in the twin-track tunnel. The pollutant air in the tunnel is high when two trains run simultaneously in opposite direction and all shafts functioned as the natural shaft cases when there are no electrical power supplies in the shafts. The remained pollutant air inside the tunnel enters into the station platform when the doors are opened.

Numerical Simulation in the Air-Curtain Installed Subway Tunnel for the Indoor Air Quality
The Platform Screen Doors improve Indoor Air Quality (IAQ) in the subway station; however, and the air quality is degraded in the subway tunnel. CO2 concentration and indoor particulate matter value are high in the tunnel. The IAQ level in subway tunnel degrades by increasing the train movements. Air-curtain installation reduces dusts, particles and moving toxic smokes and permits traffic by generating virtual wall. The ventilation systems of the subway tunnel need improvements to have better air-quality. Numerical analyses might be effective tools analyze the flowfield inside the air-curtain installed subway tunnel. The ANSYS CFX software is used for steady computations of the airflow inside the tunnel. The single-track subway tunnel has the natural shaft, the mechanical shaft, and the PSDs installed stations. The height and width of the tunnel are 6.0 m and 4.0 m respectively. The tunnel is 400 m long and the air-curtain is installed at the top of the tunnel. The thickness and the width of the air-curtain are 0.08 m and 4 m respectively. The velocity of the air-curtain changes between 20 - 30 m/s. Three cases are analyzed depending on the installing location of the air-curtain. The discharged-air through the natural shafts increases as the velocity of the air-curtain increases when the air-curtain is installed between the mechanical and the natural shafts. The pollutant-air is exhausted by the mechanical and the natural shafts and remained air is pushed toward tunnel end. The discharged-air through the natural shaft is low when the air-curtain installed before the natural shaft. The mass flow rate decreases in the tunnel after the mechanical shaft as the air-curtain velocity increases. The computational results of the air-curtain installed tunnel become basis for the optimum design study. The air-curtain installing location is chosen between the mechanical and the natural shafts. The velocity of the air-curtain is fixed as 25 m/s. The thickness and the blowing angles of the air-curtain are the design variables for the optimum design study. The object function of the design optimization is maximizing the discharged air through the natural shaft.
Modelling Indoor Air Carbon Dioxide (CO2)Concentration using Neural Network
The use of neural networks is popular in various building applications such as prediction of heating load, ventilation rate and indoor temperature. Significant is, that only few papers deal with indoor carbon dioxide (CO2) prediction which is a very good indicator of indoor air quality (IAQ). In this study, a data-driven modelling method based on multilayer perceptron network for indoor air carbon dioxide in an apartment building is developed. Temperature and humidity measurements are used as input variables to the network. Motivation for this study derives from the following issues. First, measuring carbon dioxide is expensive and sensors power consumptions is high and secondly, this leads to short operating times of battery-powered sensors. The results show that predicting CO2 concentration based on relative humidity and temperature measurements, is difficult. Therefore, more additional information is needed.
Synthesis of Silk Fibroin Fiber for Indoor air Particulate Removal

The main objective of this research is to synthesize silk fibroin fiber for indoor air particulate removal. Silk cocoons were de-gummed using 0.5 wt % Na2CO3 alkaline solutions at 90 Ó╣ìC for 60 mins, washed with distilled water, and dried at 80 Ó╣ìC for 3 hrs in a vacuum oven. Two sets of experiment were conducted to investigate the impacts of initial particulate matter (PM) concentration and that of air flow rate on the removal efficiency. Rice bran collected from a local rice mill in Ubonratchathani province was used as indoor air contaminant in this work. The morphology and physical properties of silk fibroin (SF) fiber were measured. The SEM revealed the deposition of PM on the used fiber. The PM removal efficiencies of 72.29 ± 3.03 % and 39.33 ± 1.99 % were obtained of PM10 and PM2.5, respectively, when using the initial PM concentration at 0.040 mg/m3 and 0.020 mg/m3 of PM10 and PM2.5, respectively, with the air flow rate of 5 L/min.

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