GSS CO2 sensors

Covid-19 is a highly contagious disease and to mitigate the spread of the virus especially indoors, the common refrain is to make sure the space is well ventilated...

Covid-19 is a highly contagious disease and to mitigate the spread of the virus especially indoors, the common refrain is to make sure the space is well ventilated with fresh air. But what exactly is fresh air? Fresh air is typically defined as cool, unpolluted air in natural surroundings. But as there is no agreed parametric definition of what fresh air is, how can you determine if the air indoors is really fresh?

Although the World Health Organisation (WHO) has not formally confirmed that COVID-19 is spread by airborne transmission, it is probably only a matter of time as other similar viruses such as norovirus and the flu are acknowledged to be spread in this way. In the case of COVID-19, it is believed that ventilation plays an important part in reducing transmission by dilution and removal of infected particles and droplets.

Ventilation is the intentional introduction of fresh air into a space while the stale air is removed. It is done to maintain the quality of air in that space. According to The American Society of Heating, Refrigerating and Air-Conditioning Engineers (ASGRAE), acceptable interior air quality is where there are no known harmful contaminants in harmful concentrations. But what constitutes harmful contaminants in harmful concentrations is left to individual States to define, such as the Title 14 California code of regulations, which stipulates for example maximum permissible levels of CO2 in a building.

In the UK, there are guidelines such as the Building Regulations 2010 for manufacturers, architects and engineers involved with building design and services to assist in the process of reducing poor air quality and ensuring there is enough fresh air ventilation. The Health and Safety at Work etc Act 1974 is the primary piece of legislation covering occupational health and safety. It states that employers have a duty of care to ensure there is a safe and healthy work environment. New and revised workplace exposure limits (WELs) came into force from January 2020 under the auspices of the Health and Safety Executive EH40/2005 containing an updated list of maximum exposure limits and occupational exposure standards for specific gases as required by the Control of Substances Hazardous to Health (COSHH) Regulations.

 

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