AIVC - Air Infiltration and Ventilation Centre

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Chemical and sensory emissions from HVAC components and ducts.

Used a trained sensory panel and chemical and microbial measurements to examine the odour generation of the various components of air handling units. States that the results revealed that the supply air perceived air quality can be affected by the system. Nearly all the components of the system were sources of pollution, with used fibre filters the worst, although there were significant differences between the different components. Oily, dusty and dirty surfaces were the worst sources. Increasing the airflow did not improve the perceived air quality downstream of the components.

Sensory characterisation of emissions from materials.

Following a sensory panel assessment of perceived air quality, proposes the use of a simple measurement method based on a dilution system connected to a ventilated small-scale test chamber in order to characterise the emissions from materials in sensory and chemical terms.

Sick building symptoms in office workers in northeastern France: a pilot study.

A cross sectional study with control was performed to identify sick building syndrome symptoms in office workers in northern France, based on an air conditioned and a naturally ventilated building. Found that exposure to air conditioning was linked to an increased prevalence of symptoms, and increased sickness absence. Two determinants not previously described resulting from logistic regression were family history of respiratory diseases and 'do-it-yourself' activities.

Prevalence of the sick building syndrome symptoms in office workers before and six months and three years after being exposed to a building with an improved ventilation system.

Aimed to find out if a decrease in sick building syndrome symptoms as the result of an improved ventilation system was still in force after three years. The buildings, both old and new, had sealed windows with mechanical ventilation, air conditioning, and humidification. The prevalence of most symptoms had originally decreased by 40% to 50%. The case was similar after three years.

Predicting sick building syndrome at the individual and aggregate levels.

Environmental conditions, sick building syndrome symptoms, job satisfaction, job stress, and occupational and personal information were assess by questionnaire of 4479 employees from 27 air conditioned offices, and indoor air quality measurements taken. IAQ met the ASHRAE guidelines for all the buildings. Found that the number of sick building syndrome symptoms per employee was linked linearly to computer use, job stress, job satisfaction, number of allergies, migraine and eye wear.

The National Institute for Occupational Safety and Health indoor environmental evaluation experience. Part Three: Associations between environmental factors and self-reported health conditions.

Regression techniques were used to assess the associations between environmental factors and work-related health conditions. The study used environmental and health data for 2435 persons in 80 offices. When adjusted for age and gender, relative risks for multiple lower respiratory symptoms were increased for variables in the HVAC design and maintenance categories, with the highest for presence of debris inside the air intake, and for poor or no drainage from drain pans. Multiple atopic symptoms were related to suspended ceiling panels. Asthma was related to renovation with new drywall.

Ventilation rate in office buildings and sick building syndrome.

Attempts to examine the relationship between ventilation rate and sick building syndrome symptoms. Uses a cross sectional population based study of 399 workers in 14 mechanically ventilated office buildings without air recirculation or humidification in Finland. Air flow was measured through exhaust air outlets in the room. A questionnaire was also used. States that the results suggest that outdoor air ventilation rates below the optimal increase the risk of sick building syndrome symptoms.

Influence of indoor air quality and personal factors on the sick building syndrome (SBS) in Swedish geriatric hospitals.

Studies the relationship between sick building syndrome symptoms and both personal and environmental factors in 225 female hospital workers in eight hospitals in the south of Sweden. The method used a self-administered questionnaire and a building survey and measurements of room temperature, supply air temperature, air humidity and exhaust air flow. Eye irritation was more common in buildings with a high ventilation flow and a high noise level from the ventilation system. Throat symptoms were more common in buildings with a high ventilation flow, among others.

Ventilation system, indoor air quality, and health outcomes in Parisian modern office workers.

The effect of exposure to different types of ventilation were examined using a cross-sectional study, which took into account indoor environmental measurements of major contaminants and aeroallergens. The study selected three buildings ventilated with heating, ventilating and air conditioning, fan coil units and natural ventilation. Questionnaire were answered by 1144 employees. Found that HVAC and FCU systems were related to a marginally higher risk of non-specific symptoms compared with natural ventilation.

Ventilation quality assessment by tenants.

A large part of the housing stock in the Netherlands is ventilated badly. Exhaust systems do not work according to building standards. Bad design, bad maintenance and deterioration give a reduction in exhaust volumes of more than 50 %. Home owners and tenants compensate with extra cross-ventilation, but often the results is poor. The National Union of Tenants and the Research Institute OTB cooperated in the design of a quality assessment tool, to evaluate the provisions for ventilation in housing. The tool is a checklist for the quality of ventilation services in the house.

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