Construction and Application of an Intelligent Air Quality Monitoring System for Healthcare Environment
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Indoor air quality monitoring in healthcare environment has become a critical part of hospital management and policy. Manual air sampling and analysis are cost-inhibitive and do not provide real-time air quality data and response measures. In this month-long study over 14 sampling locations in a public hospital in Taiwan, we observed a positive correlation between CO2 concentration and population, total bacteria, and particulate matter concentrations, thus monitoring CO2 concentration as a general indicator for air quality could be a viable option. Consequently, an intelligent environmental monitoring system consisting of a CO2/temperature/humidity sensor, a digital plug, and a ZigBee Router and Coordinator was developed and tested. The system also included a backend server that received and analyzed data, as well as activating ventilation and air purifiers when CO2 concentration exceeded a pre-set value. Alert messages can also be delivered to offsite users through mobile devices.
KeywordsZigBee Healthcare Indoor air quality Real-time Environmental monitoring
The research is funded in part by the following sources: i) the collaborating research program between Tunghai University and the Taichung Veteran General Hospital (TCVGH) through project grant TCVGH-T997806, ii) Tunghai University’s The U-Care ICT Integration Platform for the Elderly, No. 101GREEnS004-2, and iii) the National Science Council under grant numbers NSC 101-2218-E-029-004 and NSC 101- 2221-E-029-014. The authors are grateful to Dr. Sung-Yuan Hu and Dr. Yu-Tse Tsan of the TCVGH for their suggestion and facilitation of the air sampling work.
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