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Formaldehyde in the ambient atmosphere

From an indoor pollutant to an outdoor pollutant?
: Salthammer, T.


Angewandte Chemie. International edition 52 (2013), Nr.12, S.3320-3327
ISSN: 1433-7851
ISSN: 0044-8249
ISSN: 0570-0833
ISSN: 1521-3773
Fraunhofer WKI ()
atmospheric chemistry; biofuel; formaldehyde; indoor guideline values; indoor/outdoor relation

Formaldehyde has been discussed as a typical indoor pollutant for decades. Legal requirements and ever-lower limits for formaldehyde in indoor air have led to a continual reduction in the amount of formaldehyde released from furniture, building materials, and household products over many years. Slowly, and without much attention from research on indoor air, a change of paradigm is taking place, however. Today, the formaldehyde concentrations in outdoor air, particularly in polluted urban areas, sometimes already reach indoor levels. This is largely a result of photochemical processes and the use of biofuels. In the medium term, this development might have consequences for the way buildings are ventilated and lead to a change in the way we evaluate human exposure.