Adjusting To The New Normal
The ASHRAE Journal Newsletter recently published an article on March 24th that provided guidance for building operations during the COVID-19 Pandemic.
Even as knowledge continues to grow about the virus, how it spreads, and how to protect our building environments, the Brady team continues to field questions and concerns from local businesses throughout the state of North Carolina.
Business owners and operators want to know what they can do to be proactive and protect their indoor air quality and protect their business during this time of adjusting to what appears to be a new normal for the places we live, work, and play.
Here are some a few considerations we think are important to consider when making a plan for your organization:
Consider High-Efficiency Filtration
In the ASHRAE article, they list improving the central air filtration to MERV-13 or higher. An example of a MERV-13+ solution is the Dynamic Air V8 Air cleaning system. These systems provide a MERV-14 static rating and have other benefits including reduced maintenance and operating costs. This type of solution is a consideration for green buildings, hospitals, and other special clean environment manufacturing applications.
Dynamic Air also has another option, the V-Bank Sterile Sweep, which takes a capture, hold, and kill approach to provide better indoor air quality in facilities. Learn more about Dynamic Air options.
Ensure proper ventilation and air cleaning strategies
In a recently published ASHRAE position document on infectious aerosols, ASHRAE recognized different strategies that have the potential to reduce the risk of infectious aerosol dissemination. Some of these strategies included air distribution patterns, differential room pressurization, and personalized ventilation.
For additional air-cleaning options, building owners may want to look into new technologies like cold plasma generation. Phenomenal Aire’s cold plasma generator technology is a solution that is designed for installation and use within the building’s HVAC system.
This solution produces a field filled with highly charged ions that act as a scrubbing agent for the air that passes through. The scrubbing process breaks down harmful components and has been proven to kill viruses like MRSA and E. Coli by robbing them of the hydrogen atoms they need to survive. The ions created by the system can then travel into the building space where they will continue to safely eliminate viruses and pathogens in the air and on high touch surfaces. Learn more about Phenomenal Aire.
Consider implementing UVC germicidal systems
ASHRAE recommends this as a possible solution for high-risk spaces including waiting rooms, prisons, and shelters. ASHRAE notes that UVGI has been well researched and validated as a possible air cleaning strategy.
One option for UVC systems is a solution by Lumalier. Large commercial air handlers and duct systems can require the targeted application of UV light to achieve air disinfection. Lumalier provides upper air mounted solutions for healthcare settings as well as portable solutions for emergency medical services and other spaces that may need a portable solution. The Lumalier solution should be considered for high traffic environments traffic and high-risk environments. Learn more about Lumalier.
Maintain proper temperature and humidity levels in buildings
ASHRAE research suggests that controlling relative humidity can reduce the transmission of certain airborne infectious organizations. While they don’t make a recommendation on indoor temperature and humidity setpoints for the specific purpose of controlling infectious aerosol transmission, owners and operators can use the information provided in the article on infectious aerosols to make system design and operating decisions as needed.
Learn more about Brady’s Indoor Air Quality Solutions
Have questions about what your facility should do to improve indoor air quality in response to the reopening of North Carolina?