Air Quality Monitors in Brighton catch fire data (no pun intended)
Announcing: Precision indoor & outdoor air quality monitoring in one device
Image caption: construction site, via unsplash, image by zanck FL (@zanckfl).
A new academic study shows that low-cost sensors can be used to identify hotspots of particulate emissions on an industrial site, so the sources of harmful emissions can be easily found and mitigated. The sensors were also used to filter out background air pollution levels, meaning, the effects of site-specific emissions can be accurately measured. This study was led by a team of environmental scientists at Birmingham University.
Traditionally, expensive reference monitors have been used for air quality monitoring because, until now, low-cost monitors simply haven’t been accurate enough. This has been due to environmental effects (essentially, changes in the weather) causing the electrochemical sensors to over or under-read.
One of the test locations was the HS2 site at Curzon Street, Birmingham. The research was carried out in partnership with DustscanAQ using equipment that included Praxis monitors. The precision data yielded by the study enabled the research team to identify two distinct particle emission hotspots at the HS2 site.
South Coast Science has worked in partnership with a number of academic teams, including the authors of this study (University of Birmingham) and the Universities of Oxford and Cambridge. Our partners trust our proprietary edge-based algorithm used to correct the sensors, a must when monitoring air quality outdoors. It delivers a ‘corrected’ data stream that can be used immediately, requiring no post-processing. Praxis monitors also supply the raw sensor data values (that is, the data before the algorithm is applied) so an environmental scientist can apply their own analysis if they wish.
Francis Pope, Professor of Atmospheric Science at the University of Birmingham and senior author of the paper said:
‘This latest study showcases the combination of an elegant methodology for analysing real-time data from inexpensive sensors. It provides a potentially powerful solution for industry, local government and a whole host of other organisations to understand the air quality around them, and also provides a way forward to meet the Government’s legal duty on air quality standards.’
For more information, read the full paper here.