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Pollutants from materials used indoors

Ambient air monitoring - indoor air pollutantsMost people in the developed world spend an estimated 70–90% of their time indoors or in vehicles. Due to this, regulators and scientists are increasingly concerned about the impact of poor indoor air quality (or ‘sick building syndrome’) on human health.

Indoor pollutants primarily arise from sources such as construction materials, furnishings (including car trim), cleaning products, fuels, and general consumer goods. Activities such as cooking and smoking also play a significant role, with particulates being the main source of concern. In addition, the release of VOCs from consumer products and construction materials is a focus of current legislatory activity.

The presence of mould in damp buildings can also result in poor air quality, although here the main health problem lies with the resulting mould spores rather than VOCs themselves. Nevertheless, VOCs are the cause of the unpleasant odours associated with damp or mould-infested buildings, and one such chemical, methyl benzoate, is typically used as an indicator for mould contamination.

What Markes can offer

Pumped (active) or diffusive (passive) sampling on to sorbent tubes using Markes’ UNITY-xr or TD100-xr provides the flexibility to monitor indoor air pollution over different volatility ranges of VOCs and time periods. For example, pumped sampling on to TD sorbent tubes is ideal for looking at a wide range of VOCs over a short time period (minutes to hours), in compliance with ISO 16000-6 (Annex D).

Diffusive sampling is also of value for indoor air monitoring for specific analytes over longer periods of time, or for monitoring personal exposure.

Thermal desorption is also increasingly popular for testing materials used indoors for emissions of hazardous compounds.

Further information

Markes International Ltd
Gwaun Elai Medi-Science Campus
Tel: +44 (0)1443 230935
Markes International GmbH
Bieberer Straße 1-7
63065 Offenbach am Main
Tel: +49 (0)69 6681089-10
USA (West)
Markes International, Inc.
2355 Gold Meadow Way
Gold River, Sacramento
California 95670
Tel: +1 866-483-5684 (toll-free)
Markes Instruments (Shanghai) Co., Ltd
Unit 1002, Building 1
No.418, Guilin Road
Shanghai 200233
P.R. China
Tel: +86 21 5465 1216
Part of Schauenburg International

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