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Volatile organic compounds

Characteristics, distribution and sources in urban schools
 
: Mishra, N.; Bartsch, J.; Ayoko, G.A.; Salthammer, T.; Morawska, L.

:

Atmospheric environment 106 (2015), S.485-491
ISSN: 0004-6981
ISSN: 1352-2310
Englisch
Zeitschriftenaufsatz
Fraunhofer WKI ()
volatile organic compounds; ambient concentrations; personal exposure; schools; children

Abstract
Long term exposure to organic pollutants, both inside and outside school buildings may affect children's health and influence their learning performance. Since children spend significant amount of time in school, air quality, especially in classrooms plays a key role in determining the health risks associated with exposure at schools. Within this context, the present study investigated the ambient concentrations of Volatile Organic Compounds (VOCs) in 25 primary schools in Brisbane with the aim to quantify the indoor and outdoor VOCs concentrations, identify VOCs sources and their contribution, and based on these; propose mitigation measures to reduce VOCs exposure in schools. One of the most important findings is the occurrence of indoor sources, indicated by the I/O ratio >1 in 19 schools. Principal Component Analysis with Varimax rotation was used to identify common sources of VOCs and source contribution was calculated using an Absolute Principal Component Scores technique. The result showed that outdoor 47% of VOCs were contributed by petrol vehicle exhaust but the overall cleaning products had the highest contribution of 41% indoors followed by air fresheners and art and craft activities. These findings point to the need for a range of basic precautions during the selection, use and storage of cleaning products and materials to reduce the risk from these sources.

: http://publica.fraunhofer.de/dokumente/N-322172.html