Whether it’s in your home, a restaurant or an office, the quality of the air you breathe is a non-negotiable thing. Not because air is free and we all have access to it, but because clean air contributes to happy people and workers, and therefore, to increased productivity and good results. While the general air pollution is not something that we as individuals can control, but what we definitely can do is avoid spending time in an environment that has a higher air pollution than what’s normal. That being said, I can easily say that choosing whether we’d be breathing in polluted air or not, is a decision we’d be making in the name of preserving our health, in the first place.
There’s an entire management area dedicated to the quality of air people breathe and it’s called air quality management. It is possible to improve the air quality of a facility, such as a school, an office and even improve the air quality at home, but before anything is done, the actual situation needs to be carefully evaluated.
The process of measuring just how quality the air in a certain room is, is fairly simple with the right tools. Of course, no one can actually just take a breath and say: ‘you have 30% air pollution here, unless they’re some kind of a magician. For doing a solid analysis on air pollution, you need proper air monitoring equipment.
The instruments comprising the air monitoring equipment often include pieces like anemometers, (to measure air velocity through calculating the volumetric flow of air), psychrometers (for determining the target superheat) and other devices designed to determine certain features of the air. Besides being used for testing the air in a room, these tools are often used for testing the work of HVAC devices. The equipment used delivers clear data and allows for it to be stored for further usage and comparison. The analysis that can be done with this equipment includes:
- assessment of the degree of air pollution;
- information on the type of pollution and the quality trends;
- collecting data from an evaluation of the air quality models;
- providing information which can be used as support for the implementation of air quality standards;
- testing and controling the results from the emissions control systems and strategies.
It’s important to mention that there are different air pollution situations, and determining the quality of air in various environments requires the implementation of different tools and procedures. Some pollutants for example, can’t be determined with a simple air test and require a specific monitoring strategy to be developed, which can be really costly.
There are also larger monitoring facilities which serve the purpose of monitoring the air quality on a larger territory, like a city for example. Their purpose is to measure the air pollution and provide a timely warning if the level reaches a degree that’s dangerous for the human population.