skip to main content

DOE PAGESDOE PAGES

Title: Spatial and temporal variations in indoor environmental conditions, human occupancy, and operational characteristics in a new hospital building

The dynamics of indoor environmental conditions, human occupancy, and operational characteristics of buildings influence human comfort and indoor environmental quality, including the survival and progression of microbial communities. A suite of continuous, long-term environmental and operational parameters were measured in ten patient rooms and two nurse stations in a new hospital building in Chicago, IL to characterize the indoor environment in which microbial samples were taken for the Hospital Microbiome Project. Measurements included environmental conditions (indoor dry-bulb temperature, relative humidity, humidity ratio, and illuminance) in the patient rooms and nurse stations; differential pressure between the patient rooms and hallways; surrogate measures for human occupancy and activity in the patient rooms using both indoor air CO₂ concentrations and infrared doorway beam-break counters; and outdoor air fractions in the heating, ventilating, and air-conditioning systems serving the sampled spaces. Measurements were made at 5-minute intervals over consecutive days for nearly one year, providing a total of ~8×10⁶ data points. Indoor temperature, illuminance, and human occupancy/activity were all weakly correlated between rooms, while relative humidity, humidity ratio, and outdoor air fractions showed strong temporal (seasonal) patterns and strong spatial correlations between rooms. Differential pressure measurements confirmed that all patient rooms were operated at neutralmore » pressure. The patient rooms averaged about 100 combined entrances and exits per day, which suggests they were relatively lightly occupied compared to higher traffic environments (e.g., retail buildings) and more similar to lower traffic office environments. There were also clear differences in several environmental parameters before and after the hospital was occupied with patients and staff. Characterizing and understanding factors that influence these building dynamics is vital for hospital environments, where they can impact patient health and the survival and spread of healthcare associated infections.« less
Authors:
 [1] ;  [2] ;  [2] ;  [3] ;  [1]
  1. Illinois Inst. of Technology, Chicago, IL (United States)
  2. Univ. of Toronto, Ontario (Canada)
  3. Argonne National Lab. (ANL), Argonne, IL (United States); Univ. of Chicago, Chicago, IL (United States)
Publication Date:
OSTI Identifier:
1191134
Grant/Contract Number:
AC02-06CH11357
Type:
Accepted Manuscript
Journal Name:
PLoS ONE
Additional Journal Information:
Journal Volume: 10; Journal Issue: 3; Journal ID: ISSN 1932-6203
Publisher:
Public Library of Science
Research Org:
Argonne National Laboratory (ANL), Argonne, IL (United States)
Sponsoring Org:
USDOE
Country of Publication:
United States
Language:
English
Subject:
54 ENVIRONMENTAL SCIENCES