12 Environmental Monitoring for Smart Buildings

Petros Spachos1 and Konstantinos Plataniotis2

1 School of Engineering, University of Guelph, Canada

2 Department of Electrical and Computer Engineering, University of Toronto, Canada

12.1 Introduction

Environmental monitoring describes the processes and activities that need to take place to characterize and monitor the quality of the environment. Indoor air quality (IAQ) refers to the quality of the air within and around buildings and structures. Environmental and IAQ monitoring is an important concern since it relates directly to the health and comfort of building occupants. Occupants of buildings with poor IAQ report a wide range of health problems, which are often called sick building syndrome (SBS) or tight building syndrome (TBS), building‐related illness (BRI), and multiple chemical sensitivities (MCS) (CCOHS (2013)).

Common issues associated with IAQ include improper or inadequately maintained heating and ventilation systems as well as contamination by construction materials (glues, fiberglass, particle boards, paints, etc.) and other chemicals. At the same time, the increase in the number of building occupants and the time spent indoors directly impact the IAQ (CCOHS ( 2013)). Everyday, people work in their offices or sit on meeting rooms where the quality of the air can affect not only their performance but also their health.

There are many sources of indoor air contaminants:

  • Carbon dioxide ( ), perfume, and ...

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