Why Indoor Air Quality Matters
Indoor Air Quality (IAQ) refers to the air quality in a building or structure, breathed in every day by the building’s occupants.
When planning new residential buildings, schools, offices or light commercial buildings, many things must be considered. Besides structural factors, there are also the topics of heating, cooling and something often neglected: indoor air quality.
Did you know that the indoor air we breathe, whether at home, at the office, or in a hotel room could in fact be much more polluted than the air outside?
- 90% of our lives is spent indoors
- Indoor air quality can be 2 to 5x worse than outdoor air quality because of pollutants, such as pollen, bacteria, etc.
Indoor Air Pollutants and Particles
With the right system (air conditioning, ventilation, air purification equipment) air pollutants such as pollen, spores, cement dust, bacteria, viruses or germs can be filtered out of the air.
The smaller these particles, the more dangerous they are for our health, therefore particulate matter are categorized based on their size.
Particles & Areas of Deposit
The lighter and smaller a particle is, the longer it stays in the air.
• PM10 : all particles up to 10 µm (0.01 mm)
Deposit in the nose and pharynx of the human respiratory system
• PM2.5 : all particles up to 2.5 µm (0.0025 mm)
Are small enough to reach the human lung
• PM1 : all particles up to 1 µm (0.001 mm = 1 micron)
Are small enough to find their way through the cell membranes of the alveoli into the human bloodstream and cause life-threatening diseases
Due to their harmfulness (high risk for cardio vascular diseases), permanence and frequency, particles smaller than 2.5 μm (i.e. PM2.5 and PM1) need the most attention.
Indoor Environment Quality Components
Ventilation: Ensures the provision of fresh and clean air
Energy recovery: Delivers energy savings by transferring heat and moisture between airflows thus helping to bring supply air to the required indoor conditions for temperature and humidity
Air processing: Delivers the required conditioned air to optimize the energy efficiency of indoor HVAC equipment
Humidification: Ensures the desired moisture level in the conditioned space
- Filtration: Ensures clean and healthy air by filtering out pollen, dust, odors and other contaminants that are harmful to our health
Let's have a closer look at Ventilation and Filtration, 2 components directly linked to improved Indoor Air Quality
Venitlation systems ensure optimal climate conditions by providing a fresh, healthy and comfortable environment for buildings of all sizes and different applications.
In a completely closed room in a building, air cannot easily enter/leave the room, causing air pollutants to remain and accumulate in the room. This could impact the health of people in the room. Ventilation is essential for diluting and removing these air pollutants.
A well-maintained ventilation system and adequate air-exchange rate have been demonstrated to be an effective solution to protect people from contaminants, including viruses.
Daikin ventilation products are seamlessly integrated in a total heat pump solution, so you reduce the number of individual systems and independent suppliers for your HVAC-R system.
To achieve optimal ventilation, Daikin maintains the highest standards of energy efficiency and has a wide range of options to achieve the needed filtration and hygienic levels for your project.
Virus particles can piggyback on larger dust particles or droplets and travel through a building. Infectious diseases can be controlled by interrupting the transmission routes used by a pathogen. Using high efficiency air filters in air conditioning and ventilation systems can help to capture the majority of airborne particles, reduce the airborne concentration of bacteria and viruses and thus the risk of transmission through the air.
Filter Efficiency Classification
With the introduction of the new ISO 16890 standard, filter classification is made based on the capability to filter out certain particles according to the particle size.
An air filter qualifies as Filter Group ISO ePM1 if the minimum filter efficiency is at least 50% (the filter removes at least 50% or more particulate sizes ≤1 μm) as you can see on the table.
Furthermore the average filter efficiency is indicated. If the average efficiency for ISO PM1 particles is 68%, then the classification becomes PM1 65% as the average efficiency is rounded down to the nearest 5% increment).
HEPA filters provide an extremely high-efficiency filtration for particles and must at least filter out 99.95% of Particle Matter with a diamter of 0.3 μm!
As such a HEPA filter is more efficient than an ePM1 filter.
|Articulate Size Filtration (μm)
|0.3 ≤ x ≤ 1
|Nanoparticles, exhaust gases, viruses
|0.3 ≤ x ≤ 2,5
|Bacteria, fungal and mold
spores, pollen, toner dust
|0.3 ≤ x ≤ 10
|Pollen, desert dus
|0.3 ≤ x ≤ 10
|*ePM = efficiency Particulate Matter
HEPA filter classes
Air disinfection add-ons for filtration
With a good filtration system you can capture very small Particle Matter from the airstream, but the captured virusses, bacteria and fungal organisms are not inactivated. They can still replicate and potentially cause diseases.
In order to prevent this from happening air disinfection is needed.
Top air treatment through unique Flash Streamer technology
Daikin's patented Flash Streamer technology inactivates more than 99.9% of the Novel Coronavirus (SARS-Cov-2).
The massive streamer discharge hits the allergens and hazardous chemical substances, decomposing and fragmenting their surface proteins, which are then destroyed through oxidation.
During the test allergens were placed on the electrode of the streamer discharge unit and then photographed through and electron microscope after being irradiated.
(Testing organization: Yamagata University and Wakayama Medical University)
Ultraviolet energy inactivates viral, bacterial, and fungal organisms so they are unable to replicate and potentially cause disease.
The entire UV spectrum is capable of inactivating microorganisms, but UV-C energy (wavelengths of 200 – 280 nm) provides the most germicidal effect.
Disinfection and sanitization through UV-C light is widely used in hospitals.
UV-C light however is a health hazard to the human body.
By treating recirculated & fresh air with UV-C light directly within the Air Handling Units, clean and microbe free air can be achieved without exposing the human body to harmful UV light.
Daikin IAQ Solutions for every need
For your home
For your business
It’s time for fresher, healthier, and more comfortable indoor spaces. So everyone can breathe easy.
Download our whitepaper to find out how improved indoor air quality can benefit everyone.