Effect of a new ventilation system on health and well-being of office workers.

Examines the effect of a new, individually controlled ventilation system on employee symptoms. Two groups of employees were studied in one office building with mechanical ventilation, with one group the control. Individual control of the workspace ventilation was given to the intervention group. The new system gave higher air velocities, more variable temperatures, and higher concentration of airborne dust and fungal spores. Nevertheless, after four months, employees reported fewer symptoms.

Sorption of gaseous compounds on indoor materials - consequences for air quality.

Materials in the indoor environment are generally regarded as the sources of contaminants which affect air quality indoors. Broadly speaking the same mechanisms which determine the emission of contaminants from materials also determine the way contaminants in air are taken up by materials, i.e. the sink effect. The most dramatic effects of the sink effect occur when room air concentrations are rapidly changed, for example when chemicals are emitted from various activities such as painting, cooking smoking, the use of detergents or other household chemicals.

Dynamic comfort: engaging the occupants in low energy house.

This paper presents a passive design strategy where thermal comfort is achieved by engaging the occupants to define their own comfort condition and vary the quality of the space according to their needs. Two naturally ventilated houses in South Australia designed with this approach were tested and their actual performance documented. The results showed that most of the time the houses were always comfortable without any assistance from active systems.

Retrofit project trains and learns from occupants to boost energy savings, improve IAQ in neoclassic office building.

Describes how engineers retrofitted a modern heating, ventilation and air conditioning (HVAC) system, controls and other energy saving modifications into a neoclassic 19th century building. The problems involved preserving the building's appearance, working while the occupants were present and difficulties in modifying occupant behaviour by means of memoranda to instruct them about how to produce maximum energy savings and indoor environmental comfort.

Birchensale school 2.

Reports on the detailed design of Birchensale Middle School, and how the design team has incorporated PROBE lessons into the specification. The school is over 30 years old, naturally ventilated and lightweight in construction. The PROBE team's role has been to help fine-tune the design based on the findings from PROBE post-occupancy studies. Perimeter classrooms are naturally ventilated with cross-ventilation via openable fanlights above the classroom doors.

Investigation of black soot staining in houses.

Describes a study designed to investigate sooting problems in houses where occupants reported regular burning of candles. Samples of stained carpets, filters and other materials as well as swab samples of black dust or soot were taken from five homes. Other potential pollutant sources were also identified by air quality audits conducted on each home. In addition, the study included a search of industry information to uncover best practices for cost-effective clean up and control of soot or staining problems.

Energy star takes on home performance.

Describes how home performance contractors in New York are able to partner up to benefit from the US Energy Star program. Homeowners can elect to have a comprehensive package of building performance work done on their home by a certified contractor through this new state initiative. Many homes suffer from unnecessary health, safety and comfort problems due to improperly installed mechanical systems, inadequate insulation levels, and uncontrolled air infiltration.

Household greenhouse gas emissions.