• How Alphasense is helping to meet the challenges of air quality improvements

Air Monitoring

How Alphasense is helping to meet the challenges of air quality improvements

Mar 24 2023

The demand for accurate air monitoring is increasing across the globe as the quest for air quality soars. Air quality sensors have been around for many years, but the increased requirement for air quality monitoring has led to major developments in research and development. There is, however, still a long way to go.

In September 2021, the World Health Organisation (WHO) reduced its yearly average particulate matter (PM) guideline values to 5 µg/m3. This renewed legislation, as well as the pressure on corporate social responsibility (CSR), is driving the transition of air quality monitoring from a ‘nice to have’ position to a firm commercial proposition. This is leading to an increased demand for air quality measurement instruments globally. 

Air quality sensors are used to identify and measure low-level background levels of pollution which can be hazardous to health over a long period of time. This is different to sensors used in safety applications where hazards need to be identified instantly. These sensors monitor gas levels in parts per million (PPM), whereas a typical air quality sensor will target parts per billion (PPB). 

Taking the leap from PPM to PPB not only requires more accurate sensors but also demands more of the instrument, with factors such as temperature and humidity compensation and board ‘noise’ becoming increasingly important. The increased complexity of PPB monitoring requires advanced algorithms and, increasingly, AI and machine learning to deliver useful data from sensor readings.

Will Parrett, EMEA Sales and Marketing Director, said: “Low-cost air quality monitoring to support improved air quality for all is a priority for us. While the research and development behind air quality are still in stages of infancy compared to sectors such as gas safety, we, along with other companies, are making great strides in understanding why analysing atmospheric content is so important, and how we can develop products to support this.”

Alphasense is committed to developing air quality and particulate sensors for a cleaner planet. Its air quality sensors detect all the necessary pollutants at PPB level as well as particles down to PM1.

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