How to Measure Indoor Air Pollution


| 12/11/2015 2:05:00 PM


Tags: Indoor Air Pollution, fracking, Speck Sensor,

Spreck Monitor 

Gas infrastructure will increase tenfold over the next ten years, according to the Clean Air Council, bringing gas pipelines, compressors, metering stations, and power plants to communities around the country. With them come emissions that have increased air pollution in rural areas to levels exceeding urban pollution, resulting in widespread adverse health effects, according to David Brown, environmental health consultant for Southwest Pennsylvania Environmental Health Project.

 Making such invisible pollution problems visible and measureable to community residents, has become a compelling project for Illah Nourbakhsh, professor of robotics at the Robotics Institute at Carnegie Mellon University in Pittsburgh.

“When fracking started, people didn’t know if they were being harmed by their water and air. Their tap water could be set on fire. Their horse’s hair might be falling out. People felt completely disempowered,” he said.

The Pittsburgh area was an early hub of fracking activity, and Nourbakhsh noticed discussions about it all over the city.

“We wanted to allow people to own the data and decide what to do,” said Beatrice Dias, project director at the Robotics Institute. “With air monitoring, an agency usually owns the data and makes decisions.”

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12/17/2015 12:42:20 AM

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