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Title: Indoor air quality in the Karns research houses: baseline measurements and impact of indoor environmental parameters on formaldehyde concentrations

Baseline indoor air quality measurements, a nine-month radon study, and an environmental parameters study examining the impact of indoor temperature (T) and relative humidity (RH) levels on formaldehyde (CH 2O) concentrations have been performed in three unoccupied research homes located in Karns, Tennessee. Inter-house comparison measurements of (1) CH 2O concentration, (2) CH 20 emission rates from primary CH 20 emission sources, (3) radon and radon daughter concentrations, and (4) air exchange rates indicate that the three homes are similar. The results of the nine-month radon study indicate indoor concentrations consistently below the EPA recommended level of 4 pCi/L. Evidence was found that crawl-space concentrations may be reduced using heat pump systems whose outdoor units circulate fresh air through the crawl-spaoe. The modeled results of the environmental parameters study indicate approximate fourfold increases in CH 20 concentrations from 0.07 to 0.27 ppm for seasonal T and RH conditions of 20°C, 30% RH and 29°C, 80% RH, respectively. Evaluation of these environmental parameters study data with steady-state CH 2O concentration models developed from laboratory studies of the environmental dependence of CH 2O emissions from particleboard underlayment indicate good correlations between the laboratory and field studies.
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Resource Type:
Technical Report
Research Org:
Oak Ridge National Laboratory (ORNL), Oak Ridge, TN (United States)
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Country of Publication:
United States
54 ENVIRONMENTAL SCIENCES DC - 11 - Environmental Control Technology and Earth Sciences