"Real-time, low-cost air quality measurement"

Change is in the air: cloud-based air quality measurement for indoor environments.

TVOC and eCO2 Air Quality Meter

During the Coronavirus pandemic, air quality became a hot-button issue. There was a time when obsessing over the levels of contaminants in the air was the realm of Physical Containment Level 2 labs – the type you might find in IVF clinics or research facilities dealing with sensitive biological or hazardous materials. These places have a lot of standards they must keep in compliance with, and they generally work to ensure two things: nasty gets in, and nothing nasty gets out.

But once met with a highly-contagious virus, suddenly contaminated air was everybody’s business. The need to measure air quality was a top priority.

But while there are huge volumes of guidelines for preventing contaminants, there aren’t a tremendous number of systems on the market for the detection of breaches or poor air quality. Furthermore, there certainly wasn’t anything on the market that met consumer needs - low-cost, real-time and easy to use. The systems that are available are usually unwieldly, expensive, and out of the reach of the average laboratory technician or business owner who wants to work towards reaching similar targets.

Thankfully, Telemetry2U now has a reliable, low-cost solution: the Dragino LAQ4 Air Quality Meter

LoRaWAN IoT TVOC and eCO2 Air Quality Meter
The solution

The primary source of most of the contaminants in a well-kept laboratory or quarantined area are, of course, the people within it. Poor air quality is usually the result of too many people in a space with too little ventilation. So how might we go about detecting when the levels in a space start to become unhealthy, unhygienic, or sub-optimum for preventing a contagion like COVID-19 from infecting others?

When you or I breathe, we take in (hopefully) clean air, and expel Carbon Dioxide and other volatile organic compounds (VOCs). Outdoors, these are dispersed quickly and replaced with fresh air, but in a poorly ventilated space? Clean air is depleted and the VOCs build up. This is undesirable anytime, but in a pandemic it can be fatal.

The Dragino LAQ4 will sit quietly on the wall of the room and scan for these contaminants. If levels rise, it’s clear you have too many people in one space, and not enough ventilation.

We might also consider temperature and humidity. How warm and wet air gets is another great indicator of air quality and is relatively cheap and easy to track. In fact, the Dragino LAQ4 measures them too – alerting you of peaks in temperature and humidity before they rise to problematic levels.

You can see a working demo of a Dragino LAQ4 on Telemetry2U's IoT Platform.

Dragino LAQ4 LoRaWAN IoT Air Quality Meter