User-friendly air quality monitoring system

Banhazi, Thomas (2009) User-friendly air quality monitoring system. Applied Engineering in Agriculture, 25 (2). pp. 281-290. ISSN 0883-8542


A user-friendly version of the scientific environmental monitoring kit used in Australia during a large air quality (AQ) study was created to enable routine environmental assessment in commercial livestock buildings and thus improve building environments and reduce pollutant emissions. The objective of the study was to produce a reliable and cost-effective hardware and software system for measuring six key environmental variables. The main components of the 'BASE-Q' system are the two measurement boxes containing the sensors; the internet-based PC and pocket PC-based softwares; and the Users' Manual detailing recommended monitoring procedures. The first BASE-Q box contains sensors for measuring air temperature (AT), relative humidity (RH), the concentrations of ammonia (NH3) and carbon dioxide (CO2) up to 10-30 days depending on the logging interval. The second contains a vacuum pump and Venturi tubes and is used to measure concentrations of inhalable and respirable particles gravimetrically over an 8- to 10-h period. Engineering characteristics of the buildings are recorded on site and the collected data stored and processed by the internet or PC-based BASE-Q program. The program automatically calculates the concentrations and emission rates of the different airborne pollutants from individual buildings by using prediction models developed during related studies as a pre-screening exercise before actual measurements are undertaken. The size and weight of the monitoring hardware have been markedly reduced to improve ease of installation and transport. The monitoring equipment has been simplified and waterproofed to improve ease of deployment and disinfection. The special software has greatly simplified data management and reporting. These improvements have reduced the labor input required for operating the system and thus minimized the cost of AQ monitoring. This will enable producers and consultants to measure AQ routinely on farms, reducing worker OH&S risks, improving environmental outcomes, and potentially improving production efficiency.

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Item Type: Article (Commonwealth Reporting Category C)
Refereed: Yes
Item Status: Live Archive
Additional Information: Permanent restricted access to published version due to publisher copyright policy.
Faculty/School / Institute/Centre: Current - USQ Other
Faculty/School / Institute/Centre: Current - USQ Other
Date Deposited: 18 Jul 2011 11:01
Last Modified: 10 Jul 2014 03:33
Uncontrolled Keywords: air pollution; ammonia; bacteria; dust; farm building; microorganisms; particles; air quality monitoring; air temperatures; airborne pollutants; emission rates; environmental assessments; environmental monitoring; livestock buildings
Fields of Research (2008): 07 Agricultural and Veterinary Sciences > 0701 Agriculture, Land and Farm Management > 070107 Farming Systems Research
08 Information and Computing Sciences > 0803 Computer Software > 080301 Bioinformatics Software
09 Engineering > 0999 Other Engineering > 099901 Agricultural Engineering
Fields of Research (2020): 30 AGRICULTURAL, VETERINARY AND FOOD SCIENCES > 3002 Agriculture, land and farm management > 300207 Agricultural systems analysis and modelling
46 INFORMATION AND COMPUTING SCIENCES > 4601 Applied computing > 460103 Applications in life sciences
40 ENGINEERING > 4099 Other engineering > 409901 Agricultural engineering
Socio-Economic Objectives (2008): D Environment > 96 Environment > 9601 Air Quality > 960103 Farmland, Arable Cropland and Permanent Cropland Air Quality

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