Public Lab Wiki documentation



Air Quality



MACA - Open AQ monitor - Second prototype

by nanocastro New Contributor about 1 year ago | 15 | 684 | 9

The MACA Open Air Quality Monitor project (Monitor Abierto de Calidad del Aire in spanish) star...

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[WIP] Step by Step: Build a fine dust sensor with Arduino (Beginners Guide)

by niklasjordan about 2 months ago | 2 | 230 | 2

In this manual I will explain step by step how to build your own fine dust sensor. Don't worry,...

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Copper Rod to Copper Sheet Discussion

by ErikHanley11 2 months ago | 0 | 145 | 1

This research note discusses the advantages of using copper sheets instead of copper rods as the ...

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Online Odor Log v1.0

by imvec 2 months ago | 19 | 225 | 3

To set a worldwide Online Odor Log using the [Odor Log 1.0](https://publiclab.org/notes/imvec/02...

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How CAFOS (Factory Farms) Are Plaguing North Carolina Communities of Color

by Zengirl2 11 months ago | 4 | 285 | 4

At the recent Appalachia Barnraising I connected with someone from the Tennessee Clean Water Netw...

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Odor Log 1.0

by imvec 4 months ago | 0 | 402 | 3

_"The most accessible and sophisticated environmental monitoring equipment is made available to m...

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Build a plant-based air purifier

by nshapiro over 1 year ago | 10 | 2,197 | 10

Domestic chemical ecologies have both many toxicant sources and many toxicant sinks. Formaldehy...

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List of electronic nose projects

by imvec 4 months ago | 3 | 227 | 2

To create a list of electronic nose projects. Mbed microcontroller: [A Compact and Low Cos...

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More research on "air-quality" »


Title Last edited Edits Page Views Likes
Particle Sensing 16 days ago by warren 25 5
Odor 19 days ago by imvec 27 3
MACA about 1 month ago by nanocastro 4 2
Optical Monitoring of Particulate Matter 3 months ago by warren 23 4

Outdoor air pollution, in the most extreme cases, can be immediately identified even without any special training. It casts a haze over cities, collects on streets and buildings, and provides dramatic fodder for the news. But while high drama is often a prerequisite for news about air quality to be reported, the real story is the health impacts that occur even when the air isn't thick enough to see.

According to the EPA, Americans, on average, spend approximately 90 percent of their time indoors, where the concentrations of some pollutants are often 2 to 5 times higher than typical outdoor concentrations. Most pollutants affecting indoor air quality come from sources inside buildings, although some originate outdoors. Typical pollutants of concern include combustion products such as carbon monoxide, particulate matter, and environmental tobacco smoke; substances of natural origin such as radon; biological agents such as molds; pesticides; lead; asbestos; ozone (from some air cleaners); and various volatile organic compounds from a variety of products and materials

This is even more striking when the health effects attributed to outdoor fine particulate matter (PM2.5) rank among the risk factors with the highest health impacts in the world, annually accounting for over 3.2 million premature deaths. In October 2013, the World Health Organization announced they are considering particulate matter, a major component of indoor and outdoor air pollution, as a Group 1 carcinogen along with tobacco smoke and asbestos.

U.S. EPA Standards and Test Methods

National Ambient Air Quality Standards (NAAQS)

Section 109 of the Clean Air Act directs the Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) to establish National Ambient Air Quality Standards (NAAQS) requisite to protect public health with an adequate margin of safety (primary standard) and for the protection of public welfare (secondary standard). Section 109(d)(1) of the CAA requires EPA to complete a thorough review of the NAAQS at 5-year intervals and promulgate new standards when appropriate.

Complete details of the standards, measurement principles, and data interpreation, can be found in Title 40 of the Code of Federal Regulations Part 50

Summary of the NAAQS Criteria Pollutants

EPANAAQS.gif

EPA Test Methods

EPA approved instruments are designated as either a Federal Reference Method (FRM) or Federal Equivalent Methods (FEM). The complete list of approved instruments for NAAQS evaluating is provided on the EPA Ambient Monitoring Technology Information Center (AMTIC) web site

Real Time Data

EPA and its State and Tribal partners publish near real-time air quality data (typically hourly updates) as well air quality forecasts on the AirNow web site.

The AirNow site also contains, links to Visibility Cameras, which are yet another way to evaluate air pollution.

Examples of clear and hazy days from Boston HazeCam:

boston.jpg

Historical Data

Historical air quality test results are freely available through EPA AirData

EPA & Citizen Science Next Generation of Monitors

EPA has also been involved with Next Generation Air Measuring and is currently offering its Citizen Science Toolbox Resources online:

  • Air Sensor Guidebook;
  • Air Sensor Technology: State of the Science Presentation;
  • Mobile Sensors and Applications for Air Pollutants; and
  • Sensor Evaluation Report.

Other Resources for Air Quality Standards

The U.S. Center for Disease Control (CDC) and its National Institute for Occupational Safety and Health (NIOSH) also offer a wealth of guidance. In particular, the NIOSH Manual of Analytical Methods is a collection of procedures for sampling and analysis of contaminants including workplace air.

The Agency for Toxic Substances and Disease Registry (ATSDR), based in Atlanta, Georgia, is a federal public health agency of the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services. Their Toxicological Profiles, is particularly useful for when a pollutant can be identified by compound or element.

Particle Sensing Project

Public Lab has initiated a Particle Sensing Project focused primarily on Silica. This project overlaps with and includes the DustDuino and is coordinated on the Air-Quality Google Group (join in left sidebar).

DustDuino

DustDuino can help individuals with limited resources monitor PM10 and PM2.5 concentrations, indoors or outdoors. It uses Shinyei PPD42NS, a $15USD optical sensor that uses an LED and a lens to determine the concentration of dust in a partially closed chamber that draws in air from its surroundings. The sensor data is received by an Arduino development board and transmitted to Xively. Prototypes of DustDuino have been successfully built and used in various indoor and outdoor locations.

Cypress Hills Air Quality (CHAQ) Initiative

In 2013, this 8 week Air Quality Class was created for middle-schoolers in the Cypress Hills Air Quality (CHAQ) Initiative, with support from the United States Environmental Protection Agency's program "Citizen Science: Community Involvement Today and in the Future". This project was a collaboration with the Cypress Hills Local Development Corporation. Joe Saavedra and Liz Barry are the Public Laboratory facilitators. Georgia Bullen, Yael, and Jason Lipshin are involved from MIT.

Air Column Monitor

The air column monitor is in early phases of development. The April 2012 EcoHackII at Parsons in NYC brought together a group of developers, "scientists", data visualizers and activists to work on the initial design. This tool is being developed as a partnership between Public Lab and the AirQualityEgg/Sensemakers community.

Roomba Indoor Air Quality Mapping

This tool is being developed to experiment with visually mapping indoor air quality. A Roomba--the room cleaning vacuum--is programmed to travel all around a room once it is left to roam. Therefore, it is an ideal tool to assess the quality of air throughout a room.


indoor-air-quality-mapping air-quality air-quality-egg dustduino plots-air-quality

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