It is well known that the energy consumption of ventilated and air conditioned buildings is highly dependent on the design and the performance of the systems and components applied. A recent JOULE project (European IAQ Audit project, contract no. JOU2-CT920022) demonstrated that the indoor air quality is also highly dependent on the performance of the ventilation systems. Earlier ventilation standards have considered the occupants to be the only source of pollution in the indoor environment. This study clearly showed that this is not the case. It showed that the occupants are a less dominant pollution sources and that sources of pollution in the audited European office buildings comprised mostly building materials and components of ventilation systems.
A currently running European project in the frame of JOULE(contract no. JOU2-CT93-0343), was initiated to characterise and model mainly the building materials as-indoor pollution sources. A pre-study was done to characterise the origin and causes of the pollution caused by ventilation systems and its components. From this study followed that it is a complex process, in which many factors are candidate for being responsible for the creation of the pollution sources. These factors can be distributed in three categories: factors related to the components themselves (design, material), factors related to the physical/chemical environment around the components (temperature, relative humidity, airflow) and factors related to the operation and maintenance of the components.
Currently several standards and guidelines are being revised or made, taking the important fact into account that occupants are not the only polluters in a building. However, knowledge on why, when and how this pollution is caused by HVAC-systems and its components is still largely undefined. This knowledge is of great importance to develop strategies, standards and guidelines to improve and control the performance of HVACsystems and its components with regard to IAQ and energy.
The underlying proposal focuses on the following objectives:
- To develop strategies, principles and protocols to improve and control theperformance of HVAC-systems and its components for incorporation in codesand guidelines.
- To characterise the performance of HVAC-systems and the pollution fromHVAC-components.
- To investigate innovative ways to improve the performance of thesecomponents.
- To provide new entries for the European Database on Indoor Air PollutionSources in Buildings.
- To further develop protocols for testing HVAC-components and systems.
- To develop new maintenance protocols for HVAC-components and systems.
- To develop a model for prediction of perceived air quality in HVAC-systems.
- To define strategies for HVAC-systems and components to ensure a betterindoor air quality with a low energy consumption.
- To ensure the outcome of the project is disseminated properly to CEN ora-like organizations and the industry.
Funding SchemeCSC - Cost-sharing contracts