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DECISION MODEL TO OPTIMIZE INDOOR AIR QUALITY
IN COMMERCIAL BUILDINGS IN FLORIDA
BILGE GOKHAN CELIK
A DISSERTATION PRESENTED TO THE GRADUATE SCHOOL
OF THE UNIVERSITY OF FLORIDA IN PARTIAL FULFILLMENT
OF THE REQUIREMENTS FOR THE DEGREE OF
DOCTOR OF PHILOSOPHY
UNIVERSITY OF FLORIDA
Bilge Gokhan Celik
This dissertation is dedicated to my dear parents, Kemal and Nukhet Celik. This endeavor
would not have been possible without their unwavering patience, support, and love.
I would like to acknowledge Dr. Charles J. Kibert for his support throughout the
past four years and for giving me the opportunity to work in a very interesting area. I
have learned substantially from his uncompromising emphasis on quality and meaningful
research, and he has truly been a mentor in the fullest sense of the word.
I would like to thank Dr. Kevin Grosskopf for sharing his intelligent ideas and for
giving me the opportunity to work for the MC3 prOj ect, which helped me both financially
and academically. I am very thankful to Dr. Svetlana Olbina for her support, patience and
most importantly for always having the time to listen. I would like to thank Dr. Abdol
Chini and Dr. Paul Oppenheim for their insightful feedback in assuring a quality
outcome. I also want to thank to Dr. Haldun Aytug for sharing his expertise, and for
sparing time to teach for hours whenever I needed. I would like to acknowledge Fidan
Boylu who has always been there to encourage me either in person or on the phone for
whatever the circumstances might be. Words are inadequate to express my thanks to the
Erenguc Family who have made me feel home since the beginning of my j ourney at
University of Florida. I would like to acknowledge Gokce, Deniz, and Goksu Celik for
sparing their time and money on endless phone conversations. Finally I would like to
thank a very special person, D. Arzu Erenguc. It is a fact that none of this would be
possible without her help. She has enlightened me with her patience, wisdom, and
personality. Her support helped me minimize the burden on my family and myself.
TABLE OF CONTENTS
ACKNOWLEDGMENT S ............ ...... .__ .............. iv....
LI ST OF T ABLE S ........._._ ...... .__ .............. vii...
LI ST OF FIGURE S ........._._ ...... .__ .............. viii..
AB S TRAC T ..... ._ ................. ............_........x
1 INTRODUCTION ................. ...............1.......... ......
Introducti on ................. ...............1.................
Statement of the Problem. ................ ............... ........ ......... ........ ...3
Purpose of the Study ................. ...............4.......... .....
Research Questions ................. ...............4.................
Significance of the Study ................. ...............5................
Assumptions and Limitations .............. ...............6.....
Or ganization of the Study ................. ...............8.......... .....
2 REVIEW OF THE LITERATURE .............. ...............9.....
Introducti on ............... ... ......... .... .......... .............
Sustainability and the Built Environment ................. ...............10........... ...
Humans and Their Environment ................. ...............12................
Humans and Technology ................. ......... ...............13......
Humans and Buildings .............. .... ........... ............1
Indoor Air Quality (IAQ) in Commercial Buildings ................ ................ ...._.21
Standards, Regulations and Guidelines .............. ...............23....
Sources of Indoor Air Pollutants ................ .......................... ..........29
IAQ Control Techniques .............. ...............32....
IAQ and Health ................. ...............39........... ....
IAQ and True Costs ................. ...............40................
Optimization of IAQ ................. ...............47........... ....
Review of Literature Summary .............. ...............51....
3 METHODOLOGY .............. ...............53....
Introducti on ................. ...............53.................
Research Questions............... ...............5
Research Design .............. ...............54....
Research Methodology .............. ...............60....
Population ................... ...............61.......... ......
Summary of Methodology ................. ...............61................
4 DEFINING PARAMETERS AND THE OPTIMIZATION MODEL ................... ....63
Introducti on ............... ... .......... ... ........... .............6
Estimating the Costs of Improved Ventilation ................. ................ ............65
Estimating Installed Costs for Increased Ventilation ............... ........ ...............6
Estimating Operating and Maintenance Costs for Increased Ventilation ...........70
Estimating the Costs for Air Cleaning ...._ ......_____ .......___ ...........7
Estimating Installed Costs for Air Cleaners .............. .... ...............75..
Estimating Operating and Maintenance Costs for Air Cleaners .........................76
Estimation of Income Function from Increased Productivity due to Increased IAQ .78
Defining the Optimization Model ...._ ......_____ .......___ ............8
Decision Variables............... ...............8
Obj ective Function ............ _...... ._ ...............86...
Decision Constraints............... ..................8
User-Defined Independent Variables as Input Data.............___ ........._ ......90
Summary of Chapter ............. ...... ._ ...............92....
5 RE SULT S AND DI SCU SSION ............... ...............9
Introducti on ............. ...... ._ ...............93....
Solution to the M odel .............. ...............93....
C ase 1 .............. ...............95....
C ase 2 .............. ...............98....
Sensitivity Analysis .............. ...............100....
Summary of Chapter ............. ...... ._ ...............105...
6 CONCLUSION................ ..............10
A WORKSHEETS ............ _...... ._ ...............110...
B MS EXCEL SOLVER ............. ...... ._ ...............121...
LIST OF REFERENCES ............_ ..... ..__ ...............124..
BIOGRAPHICAL SKETCH ............_...... ._ ...............130...
LIST OF TABLES
2-1 Historical progress of building issues and concepts ................. .......................21
2-2 Comparison of regulations and guidelines for acceptable contaminant levels ........3 1
2-3 Collection device characteristics. .............. ...............38....
2-4 Complaints on floors with outside air provided per person. ............. ...................40
2-5 Potential economic costs and benefits of increasing ventilation rate.............._.._.. ...46
4-1 Incremental increases in cooling and heating capacities..........._.._.._ ........_.._.. ...68
4-2 Incremental annual cooling and heating energy requirements ................ ...............71
4-3 Approximate installed costs of various in-duct particulate air cleaners. ................. .76
4-4 Approximate replacement costs of media cartridges. .........._.._. ........_.._.........78
4-5 Ventilation rate (cfm per person) vs. performance index ............... ... .........__ ...78
LIST OF FIGURES
2-1 Historical design for the Eskimo igloo, Baffin Island, Canada. .............. ..... .........._17
2-2 Mud masonry Indian House. ............. ...............18.....
2-3 Larkin Administration Building, Buffalo, NY, 1906 by F. L. Wright. ................... .18
2-4 Hong Kong and Shanghai Banking Headquarters, Hong Kong. .............. ..... ..........19
2-5 Commerzbank Headquarters, Frankfurt, Germany. ................... ...............2
2-6 Logic diagram for selecting an IAQ control approach.............___ ........._ ......33
2-7 Typical HVAC system components. .............. ...............35....
2-8 Overall performance of simulated office work as a function of sensory pollution..45
2-9 Building design decisions require performance prediction and evaluation. ............48
2-10 PMV and thermal sensation. ............. ...............48.....
2-11 Example pay-off characteristic ................. ...............50........... ...
3-1 Research design ................. ...............54........... ....
3-2 Example illustration for the proposed LP model. ............. .....................5
3-3 Summary of methodology in comparison to Simon' s decision modeling process. .62
4-1 The performance index and its correlation with the supplied OA amount. .............79
4-2 PPI and its correlation with the amount of OA. ............. ...............80.....
4-3 An example for piecewise linear overestimate and underestimate. .........................81
4-4 One-piece linearization of the PPI vs. OA function ................. .......................81
4-5 Possible air cleaner locations. ............. ...............85.....
5-1 MS EXCEL 9 Spreadsheet developed. ............. ...............94.....
5-2 Case 1-MS Excel 9 screen for solution. ............. ...............96.....
5-3 Case 1-Answer sheet generated by MS Excel Solver 9~................... ...............9
5-4 Case 2-MS Excel 9 screen for solution. ............. ...............99.....
5-5 Case 2-Answer sheet generated by MS Excel Solver 9. ................... ...............10
5-6 Case 1-MS Excel Solver 9 sensitivity report............... ...............102
5-7 Case 2-MS Excel Solver 9 sensitivity report .............. ...............103....
B-1 MS. Excel screen that shows the configuration of the variables.............._.._..........121
B-2 MS Excel and Solver screen showing the integration of obj ective function. ........122
B-3 MS Excel screen and the options menu of the Solver module. .............. .............123
Abstract of Dissertation Presented to the Graduate School
of the University of Florida in Partial Fulfillment of the
Requirements for the Degree of Doctor of Philosophy
DECISION MODEL TO OPTIMIZE INDOOR AIR QUALITY IN COMMERCIAL
BUILDINGS IN FLORIDA
Bilge Gokhan Celik
Chair: Dr. Charles J. Kibert
Major Department: Design, Construction, and Planning
Sustainable design and construction practices have been developing rapidly. Many
building experts apply sustainable building strategies to their practices. One of the crucial
aspects of designing a sustainable building is creating a healthy and comfortable indoor
air quality (IAQ). Specific levels of indoor air pollutants may affect the health and
comfort of the occupants of a building. The problem starts with the lack of a decision
system for choosing a specific IAQ management option. The building industry is not
thoroughly aware of the consequences of different IAQ management methods and
decisions, and it lacks the resources to identify the "best" solutions to IAQ problems.
These consequences may result in added soft costs such as lost productivity, as well as
added hard costs such as the conditioning of the incoming outdoor air. This research
combines these two types of costs into a true cost and introduces a modeling
methodology of linear mathematical programming for optimizing IAQ in commercial
buildings. These analyses also explore the conflicts between IAQ and energy efficiency.
This research explores alternative IAQ control options in terms of improved ventilation
and air cleaning and presents an objective function and a set of decision variables, as well
as the technical, financial, and legal constraints. The significance of the research derives
from introducing the idea of applying operations research to construction management
and providing the conceptual background for formulating the optimization of IAQ in
commercial buildings. Defining a decision model for commercial buildings will help
decision makers such as designers, contractors, or building owners and managers in
making more sophisticated decisions regarding indoor air control technologies and
The Massachusetts Environmentally Preferable Products Program (MAEPP)
defines sustainability as the process of conducting business in a resource conservative
and efficient manner so that operations do not compromise the ability of future
generations to meet their own needs (MAEPP 2006). Sustainability concerns have been
emerging in many different areas. The building industry is one of these areas that have
been integrating the concepts of sustainability into industry practices. Sustainable design
and construction of buildings deals with many different issues in buildings. One of these
is Indoor Environmental Quality (IEQ). The IEQ concept includes factors such as noise,
indoor air quality (IAQ), lighting, and acoustics. All of these factors affect the quality of
a building' s interior space. Consequently different levels of IEQ affect the comfort and
health of occupants differently. On the other hand, IAQ focuses specifically on the
control of indoor air pollutants.
Most people are more aware that not only outdoor air pollution but also indoor air
pollution can be damaging to their health. A public opinion survey of 1,000 full-time
workers reported that 95 percent of those interviewed ranked the quality of air at work as
very or somewhat important, and only 3 percent believed it was not important (Chelsea
2000). The United States (US) Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) studies of human
exposure to air pollutants indicate that indoor air levels of many pollutants may be 2 to 5
times, and occasionally more than 100 times, higher than outdoor levels (USEPA 1993).
These levels of indoor air pollutants are of particular concern because it is estimated that
most people spend as much as 90% of their time indoors. In contrary to outdoor air,
indoor air can be recycled constantly causing the air to trap and build up contaminants.
Common contaminants include smoke, dust, mold and spores, pollen, and odors. The
indoor air pollutants can be caused by several different reasons such as various
equipment, heating ventilation and air conditioning (HVAC) systems, human activities,
and building materials. Controlling these systems and many other sources of air pollution
involves measures to be taken at many stages of a building's lifecycle. Design,
construction, and occupancy phases are all crucial stages that can include activities and
decisions to affect IAQ.
One of the interesting contradictions of sustainable construction practices is
between IAQ and energy efficiency measures. Energy efficiency has become one of the
most important issues for many industries since the oil crisis took place in 1970s. This
trend has become stronger with the development of "green" building strategies,
environmentalism, and other movements that promote tighter building envelopes to
maximize the energy savings. However this trend unintentionally decreased the indoor air
quality of the buildings. Tighter building envelopes decrease the amount of outdoor air
(OA) supplied into the building, thus creating buildings that are mostly dependant on
mechanical systems. In several cases this approach created the Sick Building Syndrome
(SB S), which describes
situations in which building occupants experience acute health and/or comfort
effects that appear to be linked to time spent in a particular building, but where no
specific illness or cause can be identified; complaints may be localized in a
particular room or zone, or may be spread throughout the building. (BIOTECH
2005, p. 6)
The effects of poor indoor air quality are not limited to health problems. Buildings
with higher indoor air contaminant levels can possibly cause loss of productivity, legal
liabilities, and remediation costs. The problems associated with poor indoor air quality
are examined and explained in more detail in Chapter 2.
Statement of the Problem
The building itself generates many indoor air pollutants mainly due to poor choices
of building materials or furniture, and poor maintenance of HVAC systems. The main
obj ective for improving air quality is to determine the required levels of ventilation, air
filtering, and contaminant source management. The problem that the building industry is
facing is that there are no decision support tools other than the local and national
standards that can guide the decision makers with their choice of indoor air management
options in a more precise and cost-effective manner.
A common experience is that building regulations do not in themselves guarantee a
good indoor climate in specific cases. Mendell et al. (2002) explain that current building
codes are also based primarily on practical experience within the building sector and not
on health-related criteria. The maj or IAQ problems derive from frequent design,
construction, and operation defects. These defects usually create indoor environmental
problems deriving from indoor air contaminants such as mold, fungi, various bacteria,
and viruses. The environmental technology that is used in a building can either be a
contributor or a solution to the IAQ of a building.
Mendell et al. (2002) argue that science is not the limiting factor but rather
economic and institutional barriers are the primary barriers. Decisions affecting IAQ are
often made on lowest hard costs and this approach usually discourages spending more on
improving IAQ. The cost of poor IAQ commonly falls on occupants rather than on
building decision makers who may ignore the soft costs of IAQ measures.
Soft costs in the building industry are architectural, engineering, and legal fees as
distinguished from land and construction costs (Corporate Real Estate Solutions [CRES]
2005). Soft costs generally represent any costs that are not related to the actual land and
construction costs. Consequently the soft costs associated with IAQ may include but not
be limited to costs associated with productivity, health, insurance fees, litigation, etc. One
of the most important issues in regard to improving IAQ of a building thus reducing the
soft costs may be found in the relationship between occupant comfort and productivity.
Worker salaries constitute the maj or cost of operating a commercial building, generally
estimated at over 90% of the total operating cost, so that even a small increase in
employee productivity can considerably decrease a company's operating costs (American
Institute of Architects San Francisco Chapter [AIASF] 2001).
Purpose of the Study
The purpose of this research is to develop a decision model for optimizing the
control of indoor air pollutants in commercial buildings in Florida. The goal of the
research is to help decision makers determine the optimal indoor air management options
to maximize the benefits of a better indoor air quality.
The maj or research question to be investigated in this research is given below:
*Can an optimization model be developed to select effectively the optimal IAQ
measures in commercial buildings in Florida to meet or exceed the standards
required by code?
This study also explores the answers to the following question:
*What are the decision criteria for building owners and managers when choosing a
specific indoor air management option?
Significance of the Study
Decision-making processes for IAQ issues in the building industry have been
determined by the local and national regulations that may not always guarantee the
optimum decision. Building owners and managers or their representatives are not
completely aware of the consequences of different indoor air quality management
methods and decisions, and they may lack the means to identify the "best" solutions to
IAQ problems. The significance of this study derives from the determination of the
optimum IAQ options for commercial buildings in Florida. However the outcome model
of this study and its methodology would also be used as a basis of similar building-
related decisions such as different locations, different types of buildings, or even different
From a wider perspective, this research contributes to current sustainable building
research in terms of quantifying the benefits of better IAQ in buildings, which would
eventually help promote sustainable buildings. The research also aims to contribute to the
clarification of arguments regarding the conflicts between IAQ and energy efficiency
issues from a quantitative point of view. In conclusion, defining a decision model for
commercial buildings will help decision makers such as designers, contractors, or
building owners and managers in making more sophisticated decisions regarding indoor
air control technologies and strategies. The model developed in this research may
potentially help commercial building owners and managers build long-term savings by
increasing the productivity of the workers and decreasing the losses due to worker health
and performance problems.
Assumptions and Limitations
Indoor air problems in buildings can appear in many different types of buildings.
However these problems are more common in commercial and institutional buildings due
to their dense population. This study only focuses on IAQ management in new
commercial buildings, where significant savings can be generated by increased worker
productivity and performance.
There are several types of IAQ management options in commercial buildings.
These options may include different technologies with various initial and lifecycle costs.
In order to limit the number of options, this study concentrates on the following two
* Improved Ventilation
* Air Cleaning
There are various situation and considerations under which one or more options
may be included, or excluded, as a candidate for IAQ control in a particular building.
Although in some cases one of these approaches might be the only logical candidate, this
research limits the research to buildings that would have the two above options as IAQ
control techniques. More detailed descriptions of these and some other options are given
in Chapter 2.
In order to control the different Eixed costs, the study limits the analysis to research
on marginal costs. Marginal cost may be defined as the "change in cost per exposure"
where exposure would be (concentration) x (number of occupants) x (time) (Henschel
1999). This research only focuses on buildings that are not located in regions or zones
where the outside air is a source of contamination such as industrial sites. It is also
assumed that the number of occupants inside a building will not exceed the limits that are
mentioned in ASHRAE Standard 62.1-2001 (American Society of Heating, Refrigerating,
and Air-Conditioning Engineers [ASHRAE] 2001).
The assumptions adapted while configuring the optimization model are given
below. Many of these assumptions aim to clarify the optimization model and set clear
boundaries on the potential applications of the model.
* The cost data regarding the proposed energy cost calculations are based on
equipment that runs on electricity. Simple modifications that are also mentioned in
this study would provide calculation methods for other sources of energy as well.
* The cleaners considered are only the particulate air cleaners with an average
removal efficiency of 65% or greater as measured in ASHRAE standard 52. 1-1992
* The model assumes that the total outdoor air (OA) ventilation will not go over 140
ofm assuming that above this value there would be additional fixed costs due to
equipment replacement and/or upgrade.
* As default the overall Energy Efficiency Ratio (EER) for the cooling system is
assumed to be 10 Btu/h/W.
* Overall efficiency of the heating system is assumed to be 1.0 Btu/h per Btu/h.
(Users may use 0.7 for systems that work with gas)
* The assumption is that in Florida, on average over the cooling and heating seasons,
all of the heat added to the air stream by the fan must be removed by the cooling
system (Henschel 1999).
* The assumption is that the productivity curves for air cleaning and the amount of
OA ventilation are independent from each other. However studies such as
Wargocki et al. (2000) state that the amount of pollution and the amount of
ventilation are in fact correlated when calculating the performance index. Yet there
is not enough data to actually quantify this dependency. In the case of generation of
these new data the model would become nonlinear.
* The assumption for the proposed cost calculation methods is that the heating
capacity range of the HVAC system is between 11 and 40 kW.
* The assumption is that the systems used in buildings have economizers where the
required OA increase can be achieved without enlarging the OA intake duct and
without increasing the dimensions of the central exhaust ducting compared to initial
design (Henschel 1999).
*The assumption is that if a dedicated-OA unit is to be installed in a new building, it
will be designed to condition all of the OA entering the building.
Organization of the Study
The maj or outline of the research is explained in more detail in the following
chapters. Chapter 1 introduces the problems regarding IAQ in commercial buildings, as
well as lists the research questions, purpose, limitations, and assumptions. Chapter 2
reviews the current literature that is relevant to IAQ issues in sustainable buildings.
Different techniques to control IAQ in commercial buildings, and the consequences of
change in indoor air quality are also investigated in Chapter 2. There are many studies
that demonstrate the importance of IAQ in commercial buildings and its effects on the
occupants of a building. Chapter 2 covers some of these important studies in terms of
their approach and results.
Chapter 3, which includes the design of the research as well as the tools and
methods used in the study, briefly explores the methodology of the research. Chapter 3
also introduces the research questions and the research population. Chapter 4 covers the
details of the methodologies for calculating the required parameters and introduces the
developed IAQ decision model. The solution to the model and the sensitivity analyses
along with the discussions of the solutions are presented in Chapter 5. Finally Chapter 6
presents an overall conclusion and the possible recommendations for future work.
REVIEW OF THE LITERATURE
This chapter explores the existing literature relevant to sustainable buildings and
specifically IAQ issues in commercial buildings. Buildings have significant impacts on
the environment and their occupants during construction, throughout their operation, and
during end-of-life (decommissioning). The US Green Building Council (USGBC) defines
"green" or "sustainable" building as a term that refers to design and construction
practices that significantly reduce or eliminate the negative impact of buildings on the
environment and its occupants through all life cycle phases of the building (USGBC
2003). This concept can be applied to design, construction, and operation of new
buildings or renovations of existing buildings.
The building industry is ever more focused on making its buildings more
sustainable, which includes using healthier, less contaminating, and more resource-
efficient practices. Indoor environmental quality (IEQ) deals with the quality of the air
and environment inside buildings, based on many different conditions that can affect the
health, comfort, and performance of occupants. These conditions may include
contaminant concentration, temperature, relative humidity, light, sound, and other factors
(USEPA 2005a). It is important to note that a good IEQ is a vital element of sustainable
buildings. Building owners, managers, occupants, architects and builders can all benefit
from the increased IEQ in terms of minimizing the negative health effects, legal liability,
and possible remediation cases.
IAQ is a crucial segment of IEQ and has maj or impacts on the overall IEQ of a
building. Improving IAQ involves to design, construct, commission, operate, and
maintain buildings in ways that decrease contaminant sources and remove contaminants
while ensuring that fresh outdoor air is persistently supplied.
Sustainability and the Built Environment
The problem of sustainability should first be explored in order to provide a strong
basis for the concept of sustainable buildings. The subj ect of a sustainable future is taking
place at the center of gravity of the triangle of environment, sociology, and economy.
Environmental problems, the magnitude and frequency of which are continuously
increasing, keep their place at the agenda of many countries rather than being just a local
concern. In order to Eind an answer to all of these worries, many different ideologies and
hypothesis are being discussed in today's world. One of these different proposals to
determine the relation between nature, human, and the built environment is sustainability
or sustainable development.
Many definitions of sustainable development have been offered, some general and
some more precise. The following definitions are some examples.
Development, which meets the needs of the present without compromising the
ability of future generation to meet their own needs. (World Commission on
Environment and Development [WCED] 1987, p. 43)
Using natural renewable resources in a manner that does not eliminate or degrade
them or otherwise diminish their renewable usefulness for future generations while
maintaining effectively constant or nondeclining stocks of natural resources such as
soil, groundwater, and biomass. (World Resource Institute [WRI] 1992, p. 2)
The net benefits of economic development, subj ect to maintaining the services and
quality of natural resources. (Goodland & Ledec 1987, p. 36)
To generalize and simplify various definitions, the definition of sustainability can
be summarized as a system that delivers services without exhausting resources over time.
It uses all resources efficiently in an environmental, social and economic sense.
In past years, sustainability has become a catchword capable of capturing the
attention not only of environmental scientists and activists but also of some mainstream
economists, social scientists, and policymakers. The reason for that is the sustainability of
the human activity in the biggest sense depends on technological, economic, political,
and cultural factors, as well as on environmental ones (Holdren et al. 1995). According to
this context, economists explain different ideas about sustainability. According to Lehner
et al. (1999), a sustainable economy is one that is capable of continuously securing and
reproducing the basis of its operation. This economy includes both the natural system
from which the economy extracts all the resources that it needs, and a variety of
economic and social factors. These factors may include knowledge and skills,
technology, social standards, and political standards and regulations, which determine the
capacity of an economy to generate wealth and living standards in society.
At this point instead of explaining all the definitions of various disciplines about
sustainability a more convenient approach may be to refer to the ideas of McHarg (Kibert
et al. 2002). He states that geologists, meteorologists, hydrologists, and soil scientists
were informed in physical science but not in real life; on the other hand, ecology and the
biological sciences were only aware of physical processes. He determined this problem as
the lack of integration within the environmental sciences.
Now one has to answer the question: How are all these discussions related to the
built environment? That is the question various disciplines try to answer and come finally
to the word of"Sustainable Construction". Sustainable construction can be defined as the
creation and maintenance of a healthy built environment using ecologically sound
principles (Kibert et al. 2002). Many different concepts are involved in creating the
healthy built environment. Energy, water, waste, materials, and IEQ are some of the
concepts to focus on when creating and maintaining a healthy built environment. Since
this study concentrates on the IEQ issues in buildings the following sections will be
exploring the relations between sustainability and IEQ in more detail.
Humans and Their Environment
Human beings have always had a mental and physical relationship with their
environment. Human beings themselves can be called a microenvironment and the
environment around them a macro environment (Fitch & Bobenhausen 1999). The
problem has always been to understand and balance the relations between these two
environments. There were times throughout history that had extreme environmental
conditions. There are currently regions in the world where sustaining a direct relationship
with the natural environment is almost impossible. In fact there are only few regions in
the world where people can survive without developing an "interface" between
themselves and nature (Fitch & Bobenhausen 1999). Fitch and Bobenhausen (1999) in
their "The American Building" rename the term "interface" as the third environment.
So what are the interfaces that people need in order to interact with the environment
around them? The simplest answer to this question would be "clothing". However,
wearing clothes has not always satisfied people, so they also have created spaces such as
buildings to live in. Controlling the environment of these spaces rather than controlling
the natural environment, has always been much easier. These comfort conditions for
humans depend on the essential requirements of their microenvironment. Several
conditions that are listed below determine the metabolic level of relationship between
humans and their environment (Fitch & Bobenhausen 1999).
* Spatio-gravitational forces
* World of objects
Adjusting these conditions according to the specific individual needs forms the
basics of the configuration of IEQ. This is one of the means used to create the essential
conditions in the third environment and many issues have affected the use of this tool.
These issues and their solutions that concerned humans have been constantly changing
throughout the history. The discussion on controlling the third environment is related to
some other issues such as the use of science, technology and its integration in buildings.
These issues are discussed in the following sections.
Humans and Technology
According to Heidegger (1976) the purpose held by human beings has always been
to conquer the physical world in order to establish and extend the power and domain of
the human race itself over the universe. However, human freedom and victory over
nature has depended on the degree of knowledge about the laws of nature. The pure
knowledge of humans can be called "science" whereas the application of science is
known as "technology". Often the terms, technology and science, are confused. Science
deals with the natural world. Technology is the application of natural laws, which govern
the universe. This is not to say science and technology are unrelated. Science deals with
"understanding" while technology deals with "doing"(Heidegger 1976).
Technology is a human activity. It is an activity in which human beings form and
change natural reality for practical reasons with the help of means and methods. In his "A
Question Concerning Technology", Heidegger (1976) states that the manufacture and
utilization of equipment, tools, and machines, the manufactured and used things
themselves, and the needs and ends that they serve, all belong to what technology is.
Modem science and technology have been intentionally and methodically applied
to every side of human existence. Heidegger (1976) states that modern technology is
something incomparably different than all earlier technologies because it is based on
modern physics as an exact science. He concludes that modem science represents nature
as a calculable coherence of forces. Nature at any case seems to have the most crucial
significance when dealing with technology. McCleary (1983) in his "An Interpretation of
Technology" clearly defines the relations between technology, human, and nature. He
explains a person' s fundamental activity as one of productive interchange with nature.
This productive interchange that we may call "technology" is defined as the
communication between societies and their natural environments in the production of the
According to McCleary (1983), construction of a new nature, which is interposed
between societies and original nature, is called "supernature". Supemature is definitely a
product of technology. A higher level of supernatural existence is super-supernature",
which is the concern of high technology. McCleary (1983) divides technology, which is
an interconnection between the original nature and human, into three levels:
* High technology
* Middle technology
* Low technology
McCleary (1983) explains the product of "super-supernature"' as the concern of
high technology. Low technology on the other hand is explained as a concern of those
who wish to return to that earlier relation that existed between societies and their natural
environments preferably in a technologically underdeveloped region. McCleary (1983)
claims that current practice of our professions is in the bondage of middle level
technology to the exclusion of both high and low technologies. Heidegger (1976) states
that more questioning of technology means that the mystery of it reveals itself. Yet
because of the more questioning of the technology's essence, the more mysterious the
essence of art becomes. Heidegger (1976) shows the contradictions of human nature by
stating that the feeling of danger helps human being become more questioning. Finally,
Heidegger (1976) wants to emphasize whether the kind of revealing of 'Being' that
shows itself in the fine arts can rescue man from danger of enframing, which he defines
as the essence of technology. So man has to rethink the meaning of modern science and
Humans and Buildings
The relation of humans with buildings is related to the essence of architecture and
building construction. It is essential at this point to remember the purpose of buildings.
Fitch and Bobenhausen (1999) define the ultimate task of architecture as activity in favor
of human beings. They state that the purpose of architecture is to maximize our capacities
by permitting us to focus our limited energies upon those tasks and activities that are the
essence of the human experience.
To be able to understand the relation between the buildings and the occupying
people we should also remember the essential needs of humans so that we will be able to
understand the expected fundamental requirements about the buildings and the third
environment they create. The relation of the human with the environment can be
reviewed at two different levels, which are perceptual and metabolic (Fitch &
Bobenhausen 1999). The conditions that determine the metabolic level of relation are
already given in the "Human and Their Environment" section. The perceptual level on
the other hand, comes into play only after the metabolic level requirements are met (Fitch
& Bobenhausen 1999).
IEQ deals with controlling and adjusting the third environment in a metabolic level.
According to Fitch and Bobenhausen (1999) there are four stages of optimizing metabolic
fit between building and its environment:
* Mechanical systems
* Enclosing membranes
* Building's exterior surfaces
Banham (1969) in his "Architecture of the Well-Tempered Environment" discusses
the environmental management in three different modes:
* Conservative mode
* Selective mode
* Regenerative mode
Thick walls of a house in a hot climate hold the radiation heat as a thermal mass
during the day, and then, after sunset, the radiation of the heat into the house helps to
control the sudden chill of evening. This whole technique can be termed as
"Conservative" mode of environmental management. The "Selective" mode, on the other
hand, employs structure not just to retain desirable environmental conditions but also to
admit desirable conditions from outside (Banham 1969). However traditional
construction has always had to mix these two modes, even without recognizing their
existence, just as it has always had to incorporate the "Regenerative" mode of applied
power without fully acknowledging its presence (Banham 1969).
The Eskimo igloo displayed in Figure 2-1 is a good example for the conservative
mode of environmental management. The shape and material used to build the igloo
signifies high-level environmental recognition and responsibility. The rounded shape
provides maximum resistance and minimum exposed surface to cold winds while
enclosing the most volume with the least material. With no mechanical systems and no
source of heat other than a small stove, interior air temperatures can be hold at a tolerable
Figure 2-1. Historical design for the Eskimo igloo, Baffin Island, Canada. (Wikipedia
Another pre-industrial age example for the conservative mode of environmental
management is the mud masonry Indian House (Fig.2-2). The high heat capacity of mud
masonry, well suited to the great environmental fluctuations of the desert, is cleverly used
in primitive housing. Although the air may be dry, when it becomes very hot ventilation
may not be desirable. Native Americans build freestanding brush-covered arbors for
daytime shade, using houses for storage and cold weather sleeping while they used the
rooftops for summer sleeping (Fitch & Bobenhausen 1999).
Figure 2-2. Mud masonry Indian House (Fitch & Bobenhausen 1999).
The Larkin Administration Building by Frank Lloyd Wright is the first entirely air-
conditioned building on record (Banham 1969). It was built in 1904 and demolished in
1950 and was one of the early masterpieces of pioneer, modern architecture (Banham
1969). The Larkin Building is one of the good examples, which employ both selective
and regenerative modes of environmental management. The mechanical and architectural
aspect of the whole environmental concept is illustrated in Figure 2-3.
Figure 2-3. Larkin Administration Building, Buffalo, NY, 1906 by F. L. Wright
A)Exterior photo, B)Isometric drawing (Banham 1969).
In the late 80s, while the application of computer technology into buildings was the
main theme of the building practice, Norman Foster Associates designed an innovative
building in Hong Kong that is dominated by several environmental management ideas. In
1986, Hong Kong and Shanghai Banking Corporation Headquarters was built in Hong
Kong by Norman Associates (Fig. 2-4). Flexible layout and systems such as raised floor
system provide space for the distribution of services and also help to cope with the issue
of flexible functional design. Computer technology is used in the building in order to
control the sun scoops that are used to track the sun location, together with mirrors
positioned outside and on top of the building atrium to diffuse sunlight to different floors
through the atrium and down to the plaza floor (Dobney 1997). The concept of energy
efficiency in the Hong Kong Bank resulted in the sunshades on the external facades to
avoid direct sun light into the building and to reduce the heat gain (Dobney 1997).
.. A BDCrI
Figure~~~~~ 2-4 HogKogad hnha anigHedurters HogKn.A)Etro
photo ,,. B)Forpa(ony19)
Frankfurt, Germany (Fig. 2-5). Commerbanki Headquarters, isn termed as te "worl'
first ecological tower" (Fischer & Grtineis 1997). Commerzbank Headquarters'
ventilation is provided by mechanical ventilation and air extraction that is used only on
days with extreme conditions, and the outer offices are naturally ventilated directly from
the outside. The offices on the atrium side receive air from outside indirectly through
ventilation flaps designed on the high glass walls of the garden facades. Just like the
Hong Kong Bank, Commerzbank also integrated complex computer technology that
controls the quantity of air pumped in, cut of supply to unoccupied spaces, sun shading,
the opening angle of windows, and the release or lock of controls and regulators. Cooling
on hot days is provided by a water-filled cooling system and the cold water needed for
cooling is produced by environmentally friendly refrigerating machines (Fischer &
Griineis 1997). High heat insulation quality on the facades and glazing also has a positive
influence on the energy efficiency of the building. Fluorescent tubes with daylight-
dependent regulation light the offices, and movement detectors automatically switch
continuous lighting in the corridors and offices (Fischer & Griineis 1997).
Figure 2-5. Commerzbank Headquarters, Frankfurt, Germany. A) Exterior photo, B)
Natural ventilation diagram (Fischer & Griineis 1997).
Similar to what Banham (1969) proposed earlier, Baker and Steemers (2000)
categorized the modes of environmental management in contemporary buildings. They
state that there are two modes of environmental management. The Selective mode
includes designs that work with a combination of form and fabric operating in a
calculated relationship with mechanical systems such as Hong Kong Bank or
Commerzbank Headquarters. On the other hand, exclusive mode of environmental
management separates the exterior and interior environments and employs mechanical
services as the main controllers of the interior environment.
The environmental management concepts, techniques and their influence on
building design, construction, and themes have always been changing since humans
created their third environment. Table 2-1 summarizes all these different approaches in
the context of maj or issues and the building concepts in the world of buildings since the
Table 2-1.Histor cal progress of building, issues anc concepts.
Decade Issues Building concept
Sense of coolness, heating,.
1960s. Mechamical systems
ventilation, insulation, shading
1970s Energy crisis Energy-efficient buildings
Application of computer and
1980s .Intelligent and smart buildings
high technology in buildings
1990s Sick building syndrome Healthy, green buildings
Twenty-first Globalization towards
century sustainable development
Indoor Air Quality (IAQ) in Commercial Buildings
Commercial buildings can include office buildings, retail establishments, light
manufacturing and assembly, restaurants, bars, etc. Commercial buildings, just like other
types of buildings use HVAC systems in order to provide a well-conditioned interior
environment for the occupants. Unlike residential buildings, these buildings have a higher
density of population and equipment. Consequently, managing a good IAQ in
commercial building may be more challenging than residential buildings.
The maj or IAQ problems in commercial buildings include airborne particles,
moisture, insufficient ventilation, and odors and gases from materials, etc. It is more
likely in commercial buildings that more moisture will be present due to the lack of fresh
air and the inconsistency in humidity and temperature control. Therefore commercial
buildings have higher risks associated with mold and bacteria problems. Many office
spaces have a number of toxic gas generating equipment such as computers, fax
machines, copiers, and printers. This can significantly impact the quality of air in
commercial buildings and the employees would be exposed to a variety and high
concentration of contaminants for at least 8 hours per day in these buildings. Levels of
carbon dioxide inside commercial buildings may also be higher due to lack of fresh
outdoor air ventilation. This can possibly cause headaches and other health related
problems among the workers. These effects and their details will be discussed in the IAQ
and Health section of this study.
Air quality in a space is determined by the quantity of air intake and also by other
factors such as air conditioning, room function, etc. Intake air in general is provided by
outdoor air (OA) and in some cases by re-circulating the existing air. However, re-
circulated air should be controlled in a manner, which would minimize energy use but
also protect occupant health thus maintain acceptable levels for worker performance and
productivity. The IAQ systems should be designed by fresh OA intake strategies
whenever it is possible. The reason fresh air intake should be used is that in many cases
increasing OA should ensure a sufficient amount of dilution to reduce the concentration
of pollutants. Natural ventilation is one of the possible ways to bring more OA into the
building as long as the energy consumption of the building is still kept at an acceptable
The amount of indoor air pollutants is correlated with different conditions that
create the building such as the site, building materials, construction techniques, building
type and use, occupant density, HVAC system, and etc. The following four elements are
involved in the development of IAQ problems (USEPA 2005b):
* Source: source of contamination or discomfort indoors, outdoors, or within the
mechanical systems of the building.
* HVAC: the HVAC system that is not able to control existing air contaminants, not
able to control conditions that help build up contaminants.
* Pathways: one or more pollutant pathways that connect the source of contamination
to the occupants of the building and a driving force to move pollutants along the
* Occupants: building occupants who are present in the building.
It is important to understand the role that each of the above factors may play in
order to identify, prevent, and resolve IAQ problems.
Standards, Regulations and Guidelines
Currently, the Federal government in the USA does not regulate IAQ in
nonindustrial settings. However, many state and local governments regulate ventilation
system capacity through their building codes. Building codes have been developed in
different states in order to promote healthy and safe construction practices. There also
professional associations, international health associations, industry organizations, state
governments, and private programs that develop recommendations or guidelines for
appropriate building and equipment design and installation. These recommendations may
play a mandatory role when state or local regulations integrate them in to their code and
regulation policies (USEPA 2005c). There is generally a time delay between the change
in new standards by professional organizations such as ASHRAE and the integration of
those new standards as code requirements (USEPA 2005c).
Below are some of the maj or tools, standards, and regulations towards regulating
IAQ in commercial buildings.
Occupational Safety and Health Administration (OSHA). The agency proposed
guidelines in 1994 towards regulating IAQ in non-industrial buildings. However on
December 17, 2001 OSHA withdrew its IAQ proposal and terminated the rulemaking
proceedings (OSHA 1994). The proposed IAQ regulations would have help (OSHA
* Ban smoking in the workplace or required employers to provide separately
ventilated smoking areas.
* Develop IAQ compliance plans in non-industrial work sites to protect workers from
certain indoor air contaminants, inadequate ventilation, and sick building
* Have periodic inspections and air testing.
* Maintain written records including documentation of reported IAQ problems.
* Control for specific contaminants such as restricting the use of chemicals and
* Have a good maintenance program.
* Conduct employee-training programs about IAQ.
OSHA stated that integrating these regulations would have required an initial cost
of $1.4 billion along with an annual cost of $8. 1 billion to employers. These costs would
have occurred due to increased and proper maintenance of building IAQ systems as well
as the increased operating costs. OSHA also estimated an annual $15 billion savings for
employers due to increased employee productivity and reduced absenteeism (OSHA
1994). Although these proposed regulations cannot yet be enforced, they at least provide
guidelines for those companies, which are willing to start a high-quality IAQ
The General Duty Clause of the Occupational Safety and Health Act requires
employers to provide a safe and healthy working environment regardless of the proposed
IAQ guidelines being in effect. It is also important to know that all workers are covered
under federal OSHA. These regulations are enforced also at the state level in the 23 states
American Society of Heating, Refrigerating, and Air-Conditioning Engineers
(ASHRAE). ASHRAE has noncompulsory ventilation standards for commercial and
industrial buildings. However ASHRAE standards become mandatory when local
governments adopt the standards into their local building codes. ASHRAE first published
its Ventilation for Acceptable Indoor Air Quality 62. 1 in 1973. ASHRAE Standard 62. 1-
1989 defined acceptable IAQ as the air in which there are no known contaminants at
harmful concentrations as determined by authorities and with which a substantial
maj ority of the people exposed do not express dissatisfaction (ASHRAE 1989). However,
this statement could not guarantee that no unpleasant health effects would occur.
ASHRAE Standard 62. 1-2001 aimed to minimize the probability of adverse heath effects
among building occupants. It became applicable to all occupied spaces except where
other standards exist. ASHRAE Standard 62. 1-2001, depending on the building function,
recommended that 15 to 20 cubic feet per minute (cfm) of outdoor air should be supplied
for each building occupant (ASHRAE 2001). Recently the 2001 standard has been
replaced by ASHRAE 62. 1-2004, which specifies outdoor air requirement for an office as
5 ofm per person plus 0.06 ofm/ft2 (ASHRAE 2004). In this latest version of ASHRAE
Standard 62.1, requirements for the office may still remain the same in cases where the
occupant density varies, or is indefinite at the time of the system design. However this
recent ASHRAE revision as the first maj or revision to the ventilation rates since 1989
appears to result in slightly lower outdoor air requirements for the office spaces (17
ofm/person). The reason for this reduction in ventilation rates should be further
researched to explore whether the motive towards this change derived from the effort
towards reducing equipment capacities as well as the energy usage over the life of each
New construction design and building operation plans should ensure that at least
the minimum OA amounts recommended by ASHRAE Standard 62.1 are being followed
to minimize IAQ concerns and associated discomfort and illness. Authorities may also
consider writing these specifications into the construction and building operation codes.
Environmental Protection Agency (EPA). The EPA does not have any
constitutional role in the enforcement of IAQ, other than issues regarding asbestos and
radon. However, there has been a legislation proposal presented in Congress that requires
the EPA to create a voluntary program to certify indoor air contractors, but this
legislation has never passed (Conlin & Carey 2000)
The EPA has established a set of specifications for use in its own facilities to
regulate the emissions from office furniture, equipment and other products. The
specifications include regulations such as workstations cannot add more than 0.5 mg/m3
of total volatile organic compounds (VOC), 0.05 ppm of formaldehyde, and 0. 1 ppm total
aldehydes within one week of receiving and unpacking the furniture.
Other guidelines. The American Conference of Governmental Industrial
Hygienists (ACGIH) has created a manual called "Guidelines for the Assessment of
Bioaerosols in the Indoor Environment". The manual provides the most important basic
data on IAQ however it does not go into much detail. ACGIH also presents exposure
limits for chemicals in the workplace, in a document called "Threshold Limit Values".
This document is widely used in assessing whether excessive chemical exposure has
occurred (ACGIH 1989). National Institute for Occupational Safety and Health (NIOSH)
and National Ambient Air Quality Standards (NAAQS) also published standards to
regulate specific IAQ levels.
The Air-Conditioning and Refrigeration Institute (ARI), which is an industry trade
group for air-conditioning system manufacturers, has created guidelines for design,
installation, and maintenance of A/C systems. These guidelines provide some of the basic
information one should know on these issues.
Building codes. Building codes vary from place to place. These codes generally
regulate IAQ by specifying the amount of OA that is to be supplied by the ventilation
system for commercial buildings. Additionally, these codes are often very specific on
construction means and methods, which may affect IAQ of a building such as carbon
monoxide problems, moisture entry into the building, and re-entry of exhaust fumes. As a
general rule, building codes are only enforceable during the construction and renovation
processes. Code requirements may change over time as code organizations adapt to new
technologies and information. However the buildings are usually not obligated to make
modifications in their structure or the way they operate in order to conform to the new
codes. It also a well known fact that many buildings do not operate in standards parallel
with current building codes, or even with the codes they had to meet at the time of their
construction (USEPA 2005c).
State laws and regulations. In the absence of any action at the national level,
several states took steps on their own to improve IAQ in buildings. At least 37 out of 53
states and territories have designated an IAQ contact person due to the increase in the
number of complaints about SBS, also called building-related symptoms (Slap 1995). 45
states have laws prohibiting smoking in public buildings. Also 19 states limit or restrict
smoking in private workplaces acknowledging that tobacco smoke is a maj or indoor air
pollutant (OSHA 1994). The Florida Building Code (FBC) regulates IAQ in commercial
buildings in Florida. FBC is based on the 2003 editions of the International Building
Code (IBC), International Mechanical Code (IMC), and International Plumbing Code
(IPC). FBC mandates that:
* Ventilation units shall distribute tempered heated or cooled air to all spaces and
shall supply outside air in the quantity of either the sum of all exhausts or 20 ofm
per person whichever is greater.
* The quantity of all exhaust air must match the intake volume of all outside air.
Supply, exhaust, and return fans shall run continuously while the building is
* Areas in which smoking is permitted shall be well vented by at least 35 ofm per
person to the outside in order to minimize smoke diffusion throughout the unit.
The International Mechanical Code that is the base of ventilation regulations in
FBC has the following statements regarding ventilation in section 403.3:
* No less than 15 ofm of outside air per occupant is required for waiting room areas,
based on the estimated maximum occupant load of 60 per 1,000 square feet.
* No less than 20 ofm of outside air per occupant is required for office areas, based
on the estimated maximum occupant load of 7 per 1000 square feet.
Although ASHRAE 62. 1-2004 has changed the requirements for minimum
ventilation rates in office spaces, the rates in IMC and FBC still remain to be parallel to
ASHRAE 62. 1-2001. However IMC is giving strong consideration for a change in the
code towards synchronization with the new ASHRAE 62. 1-2004 standards.
Sources of Indoor Air Pollutants
Indoor air contaminants can start building up within the building itself. Although
this study assumes that OA is not a source of contamination, pollutants can be brought
from outdoors as well. If the pollution sources are not controlled, IAQ problems can
begin, even if the HVAC system is accurately configured and well maintained. The
USEPA categorizes the sources of indoor air pollutants as given below. The examples
given for each category are not intended to be a complete list (USEPA 1991).
* Sources Outside Building
0 Contaminated outdoor air
Pollen, dust, fungal spores
*General vehicle exhaust
o Emissions from nearby sources
Exhaust from vehicles
Odors from dumpsters
Re-entrained (drawn back into the building)
o Soil gas
Leakage from underground fuel tanks
o HVAC system
Dust or dirt in ductwork or other components
Microbiological growth in drip pans,
Humidifiers, ductwork, coils
Improper use of biocides, sealants, and/or cleaning compounds
Improper venting of combustion
o Non-HVAC equipment
Emissions from office equipment (VOCs, ozone)
Supplies (solvents, toners, ammonia)
Emissions from shops, labs, cleaning processes
*Elevator motors and other mechanical systems
* Human Activities
o Personal activities
o Housekeeping activities
*Cleaning materials and procedures
Emissions from stored supplies or trash
Use of deodorizers and fragrances
Airborne dust or dirt (e.g., circulated by sweeping and vacuuming)
o Maintenance activities
Microorganisms in mist from improperly maintained cooling
Airborne dust or dirt
Pesticides from pest control activities
Emissions from stored supplies
* Building Components and Furnishings
o Locations that produce or collect dust or fibers
Textured surfaces such as carpeting, curtains, and other textiles
Old or deteriorated furnishings
*Materials containing damaged asbestos
o Unsanitary conditions and water damage
Microbiological growth on soiled or water-damaged furnishings
Microbiological growth in areas of surface condensation
Standing water from clogged or poorly designed drains
*Dry traps that allow the passage of sewer gas
o Chemicals released from building components or furnishings
Volatile organic compounds or inorganic compounds
* Other Sources
o Accidental events
Spills of water or other liquids
Microbiological growth due to flooding or to leaks
*Fire damage (soot, PCBs from electrical equipment, odors)
o Special use areas and mixed use buildings
Print shops, art rooms
Food preparation areas
o Redecorating/remodeling/repair activities
Emissions from new furnishings
Dust and fibers from demolition
Odors and volatile organic and inorganic compounds.
Depending on building location and characteristics, several different types of
contaminants can pollute the indoor air from the processing of organic and inorganic
elements. Daniels (1998) categorizes these pollutants as:
*Gases and vapors (CO, CO2, SO2, OS, radon, formaldehyde, carbon-hydrogen)
*Aerosols (inorganic or organic particulates such as heavy metals and pollen)
*Bacteria and bacterial spores
*Fungi and fungal spores
ASHRAE 62. 1-2004 provides a table that compares the acceptable levels of indoor
air contaminants by different agencies (Table 2-2).
Table 2-2. Comparison of regulations and guidelines for acceptable contaminant levels
Enforceable & regulatory levels Non-enforced guidelines
NAAQ S/EPA OSHA NIO SH ACGIH
5,000 ppm 5,000 ppm
Carbon dioxide 5,000 ppm
30,000 ppm [15m] 130,000 ppm [15m]
Carbon 9 ppm 35 ppm
50 ppm 25 ppm
monoxide 35 ppm [1 h] 200 pm [Ceiling]
0.75 ppm 0.016 ppm
Formaldehyde 0.3 ppm [Ceiling]
2 pm [15 m] 0.1 pm [15 min]
Lead 1.5 pLg/m3 0.05 mg/m3 0.1 mg/m3 [10 h] 0.05 mg/m3
Nitrogen 3 ppm
0.05 ppm [1 yr] 5 ppm [Ceiling] 1 ppm [15 m]
dioxide 5 ppm [15 m]
0.12 ppm [1 h]
Ozone 0.01 ppm 0.1 ppm [ceiling] 0.02 ppm
Particles 15 Cpg/m3 lr
5 mg/m3 3 mg/m3
<2.5Cpm MMAD 65 Cpg/m3 [24 h]
Particles <10Cpm 50 Cpg/m3 10 /m3
MMAD 150 yg/m3 [24 h] 1 mg/m
Sufu d .xd 0.03 ppm [1 h] pp 2 ppm 2 ppm
0.14 ppm [24 h] 5 ppm [15 m] 5 ppm [15 m]
Total particles 15 mg/m3
Many of the indoor pollutants can be avoided by increased OA ventilation as long
as the outdoor air is not polluted. However the building materials inside the building can
be the source of contamination as well. Daniels (1998) lists the sources of the worst
contaminants as follows:
* Insulating paints
* Adhesives of all kinds
* Floor coverings
* Suspended ceilings
* Jointing compounds
* Insulating materials
* Pre-fabricated materials
* Wood preservatives
* Raised floors
IAQ Control Techniques
Efforts towards improving IAQ may include different strategies depending on the
nature of the problem. Henschel (1999) approaches the control techniques in three
categories for reducing the concentrations of indoor air pollutants:
* Improved ventilation: Increases in the quantity of outdoor air (OA) supplied to a
building, and/or improvement in the distribution and mixing of the supply air
throughout the various zones in the building.
* Air cleaning: Devices mounted in the central HVAC ducting, or self-contained
devices mounted in the occupied zones, to remove contaminants from the air.
* Source management: Removal of all or part of the source, replacement of the
source by a lower-emitting alternative, treatment of the source to reduce emissions,
relocation of the source or relocation of the occupants.
In some situations it may be difficult for the decision-makers to choose which
one(s) of these options to use. When there is a localized source of contaminant Henschel
(1999) suggests using a logic diagram presented in Figure 2-6 that may help select a
specific IAQ control option. Henschel (1999) helps users by asking yes or no questions
regarding the source of contamination and directs the users towards one of the options.
assumes outside air
Is niot the source
inside the bulilding
that can be:
air flow condsisnt
HVAC: lmoe yggS
Appear possible 10
additional air to
YEEC intak~e onfiguration
air mixing in that
There must be an
\-S imporlant sorurcet
in that aren that
cannot be rem~oved
Inads. csnm ite
heclp address she
NO Madify HVAC aperation
to provided design supply
flowr. Consider further >
HVAC modls if further
Figure 2-6. Logic diagram for selecting an IAQ control approach (Localized problem resulting from sources inside the building)
(Adapted from Henschel 1999).
> mpoed Vetlin
According to a 1987 NIOSH survey, 52 out of 100 buildings with IAQ problems
suffered from mainly inadequate ventilation (Seitz 1989). According to the same study,
16% of the buildings suffered from indoor contaminants where 10% suffered from
outdoor contaminants (Seitz 1989). These numbers clearly indicate that many IAQ
problems derive from within the building and its indoor air management systems.
Manufacturers have been working on generating more advanced products for a better
ventilation technology. One example is a ventilator manufactured by Honeywell called
Perfect Window 9. This ventilator is a heat recovery ventilator, which is structured as a
pair of insulated ducts run to an outside wall. This ventilator recovers the moisture and
heat from the outgoing air in winter times, and removes it from in-coming air in the
summer Another important issue in controlling the IAQ in a commercial building is to
be able to monitor IAQ constantly (Bas 1993). For this reason, manufacturers like
Honeywell and some other companies have introduced more efficient and easy to use
handheld CO2 monitoring devices. Monitoring CO2 lCVOIS is vital since studies show that
at levels beyond 1,000 ppm occupants can experience health problems and general
discomfort, making it more difficult for them to think and work (Bas 1993). The health
effects of IAQ problems are discussed in more detail in the "IAQ and Health" section.
Ventilation: All buildings require a certain amount of OA. The outdoor air may
need to be conditioned (heated or cooled) before it is distributed into the occupied space
depending on the specific climate. Bringing OA into the building allows the indoor air to
be exhausted or to escape by passive relief, which aids to remove indoor air
contaminants. The types HVAC systems range from independent units that serve
SMore information available online at http://www.honeywell.com/sites/acs/.
individual spaces to large central systems serving multiple zones in a building (USEPA
1991). The components of a typical HVAC system are given in Figure 2-7, which
illustrates the general relationship between many components of an HVAC system.
However it is important to note that many variations can be possible.
Figure 2-7. Typical HVAC system components (USEPA 1991).
The EPA categorizes different HVAC systems as follows (USEPA 1991):
* Single zone systems
* Multiple zone systems
According to the EPA, a single air-handling unit can serve more than one building
area if the areas served have similar HVAC requirements. This would also be possible if
the control system can compensate for differences in HVAC needs among the served
spaces. Areas regulated by a common control are referred to as zones (USEPA 1991).
Multiple zone systems can provide each zone with air at different temperatures by
heating or cooling the air stream in each zone. Alternative design strategies involve
delivering air at a constant temperature while varying the volume of airflow, or
modulating room temperature with a supplementary system (USEPA 1991). Constant
volume systems, on the other hand, generally deliver constant amounts of air to each
space. These systems often operate with a fixed minimum percentage of OA or with an
"air economizer" feature (USEPA 1991).
Rather than by changing the air temperature variable air volume (VAV) systems
maintain thermal comfort by changing the amount of heated or cooled air delivered to
each space. However, many VAV systems also have requirements depending on the
characteristics of the weather, such as resetting the temperature of the delivery air on a
seasonal basis. Underventilation often happens if the system is not arranged to introduce
at least a minimum quantity of OA as the VAV system throttles back from full airflow, or
if the supply air temperature is set too low for the loads in the zone (USEPA 1991).
Overcooling or overheating can also occur in a zone if the system is not adjusted to
according to the cooling or heating load (USEPA 1991).
Most commercial buildings use VAV systems for ventilation (Public Interest
Energy Program [PIER] 2005). However the main reasons VAV systems are used in
commercial buildings derive from the financial constraints. In 1970s before the energy
crisis, a different system was used in order to bring constant air volume into the building
spaces however the air was at variable temperatures. This system brought substantial
quantities of OA to the building. However while energy efficiency has become a more
important concept, this system became less popular due to its expensive operating
(energy) costs. The VAV system on the other hand brings in only the amount of air that is
necessary and re-circulates a building' s already conditioned air at various quantities.
Although a VAV system saves energy, re-circulating air thus increasing the amount of air
contaminants is the price that it pays for those savings. This is one of the good examples
of the contradiction between IAQ and energy efficiency. The true costs of IAQ issues are
discussed in more detail in the "IAQ and True Costs" section.
Air cleaning: Air cleaning is one of the IAQ control techniques. The air filter is a
product that has been around for many years and still is one of the most crucial parts of a
building's IAQ management system. There are currently many different types of air
filters in the market that provide different protections and methods for different types of
contaminants. Many buildings use poor performance of 89% fi1ters, which are used to
protect the HVAC system but not the occupants of the buildings. According to ASHRAE
(1999), the performance of these fi1ters on filtering dust and similar contaminants is only
7 to 12% effective. Burgess et al. (2004) categorize the fi1ters into three categories:
* Fibrous and Granular (Media) Filters: Remove large particles before a second stage
collector of greater efficiency and fi1ters the dusts that cannot be easily collected by
* High Efficiency Particle Air (HEPA) Filters: These filters are used extremely high
particle collection is required such as in hospital operating rooms. This type of
cleaners are not cleanable and have low dust capacity which limits their use to gas
streams with low dust loading.
* Fabric Filters: These are the most common type of filters in the industrial
environments. They must be eventually cleaned.
Another method for cleaning air is electrostatic precipitators. This type of cleaner
collects particles by electromagnetic action. These cleaners have the advantage of less
maintenance but can pose a different threat due to ozone production (Stein & Reynolds
The most challenging part of the air-cleaning problem is the selection of the type of
filter or the cleaning device to be used. Different contaminants may require different
types of air-cleaning devices. Thus the selection of the device demands the knowledge of
the type of contaminants to be removed. Burgess et al. (2004) summarizes the basic
information about the collection device in Table 2-3.
Table 2-3. Collection device characteristics.
Collection Types of Initial Operating
Device Typ Contaminants Cost Cost Drblt
Industrial All dry powder Moderate Moderate Good
HEPA Pre-cleaned air Moderate High Fair to Poor
Single Stage Flyash, H2SO4 High Low Fair
Two Stage Welding Fume Moderate Low Good
Venturi Scrubber Chemical Fumes Low High Good
Wetted Cyclone Crushing, grinding Moderate Moderate Good
(Burgess et al. 2004).
Contaminant source management: One of the control techniques when dealing
with air contaminants is to manage the contaminant source. This may involve several
approaches (USEPA 1993):
* Source removal: This strategy involves identifying a source of contamination and
relocating it therefore it will not affect the IAQ. Examples include not keeping
garbage in spaces with HVAC equipment, and replacing moldy materials.
* Source substitution: This strategy involves identifying a material likely to impact
the IAQ of the building and selecting a similar but less toxic substitute. For
example choosing latex paint instead of oil based paint.
* Source encapsulation: Encapsulation involves creating a barrier around the source
and isolating it from other areas of the building so that there is no recirculation of
air from the contaminated area into occupied spaces. This may include isolating a
division of the building with polyethylene sheeting as well as isolating the space
from the general ventilation system by blocking return air grilles.
IAQ and Health
Following the energy efficiency trend in 1970s, many concerns about the
occupants' health in buildings started to arise due to low indoor air quality of commercial
buildings in 1980s. Government agencies, university groups, and private consulting firms
started to receive an increasing number of requests to investigate health complaints
specifically in office spaces. This led to a whole new syndrome, which is called Sick
Building Syndrome (SBS). SBS is defined as a group of symptoms that are two- to three-
fold more common in those who work in large, energy-efficient buildings, associated
with an increased frequency of headaches, lethargy, and dry skin. Clinical manifestations
include hypersensitivity pneumonitis (alveolitis, extrinsic allergic), allergic rhinitis
rhinitiss, allergic, perennial), asthma, infections, skin eruptions, and mucous membrane
irritation syndromes (Segen 1992). A 1984 World Health Organization Committee report
suggested that up to 30 percent of new and remodeled buildings worldwide may be the
subj ect of excessive complaints related to poor indoor air quality (IAQ) (American Lung
Association [ALA] 2000). Although the most common site of injury by airborne
pollutants is the lung, acute effects may also include non-respiratory signs and symptoms,
which may depend on the toxicological characteristics of the contaminant substances
(ALA et al. 1994).
Although many studies prove that indoor air contaminants can have various health
affects on the occupants, there is still an on-going argument on the validity of several
studies such as the health affects of mold. Along with many studies indicating a
relationship between the several symptoms of occupants and allergic pollutants such as
mold, there are also some studies claiming that this has not been scientifically proven.
However it is already acknowledged by the scientific community that there are many
other indoor air pollutants that can cause low to severe health problems. According to
Gamble et al. (1986), buildings where allergies are suspected present a difficult
diagnostic challenge. Gamble et al (1986) believe that only a few people may be affected,
and an allergic diagnosis may be overlooked when building occupants have complaints
about insufficient outdoor air supply, thermal discomfort, or cigarette smoke. Allergic
symptoms can be relatively mild and nonspecific, and may have disappeared by the time
a worker visits a physician' s office. Some of the findings of Gamble et al. (1986) in a
study where they evaluated a 9-story office building and compared the results to the
outside air provided per person are given in Table 2-4. According to Table 2-4, the SBS
symptoms as well as the thermal discomfort reaches to the highest rates, on the 2nd and
3rd flOOrs where no outside air (OA) was provided for 175 workers.
Table 2-4. Complaints on floors with outside air provided per person.
n=Number of Floors 8-9 Floors B-1 Floors 6-7 Floors 4-5 Floors 2-3
occupants n=56 N=42 n=155 n=131 n=175
Bronchiti s 12% 5% 6% 6% 7%
3 or more SBS
26% 26% 15% 20% 36%
Sinus Symptoms 40% 36% 25% 31% 46%
76% 84% 73% 67% 89%
OA (cfm/person) 126 72 28 14 0
(Gamble et al. 1986)
IAQ and True Costs
Indoor air quality has financial consequences as well as its health affects. The cost
of an IAQ management option is associated with two different types of costs. These costs
can be categorized as hard and soft costs.
"Hard costs" in the building industry is a term for the amount that includes total
land and construction costs (Environmental Law Institute [ELI] 2005). In addition hard
costs associated with indoor air quality would be the life cycle costs (LCC) of managing
the indoor air quality in a building. LCC of a specific system should include the owning
and the operating costs. Owning costs of a system include (Rizzi 1980):
* Initial cost of the system
* Capital recovery
* Interest and return on the investment
* Property taxes
Operating costs of a system include the following costs:
* Fuel and energy
* Maintenance allowances
* Labor for operation
* Water costs
* Water treatment cost
Rizzi (1980) explains how LCC analysis should be conducted for any heating,
cooling, and/or ventilating systems. Rizzi (1980) states that when studying owning and
operating costs of a system, the period covering the lifetime of the system should be 20
years. Rizzi (1980) also provides a methodology to calculate the owning and operating
costs of an HVAC system.
Soft costs in the building industry are known as architectural, engineering, and
legal fees as differentiated from land or construction costs. However soft costs in general
represent any costs that are not related to the actual land and construction costs.
Consequently soft costs of a specific IAQ management option include costs associated
with productivity, health, insurance fees, litigation, etc. Unfortunately many investors or
building owners usually do not see maj or incentives in considering the soft costs
associated with poor or good IAQ.
One of the most important soft costs of IAQ is productivity. Productivity and its
financial consequences become a more important issue in commercial buildings. Worker
salaries constitute the maj or cost of operating a commercial building, generally estimated
at over 90% of the total operating cost, so that even a small increase in employee
productivity can substantially increase a company's financial return (AIASF 2001).
According to the study conducted by the US Department of Energy (USDOE) and
Lawrence Berkeley National Labs in 1997, the costs of lower productivity for the US
economy ranged from $12 to $125 billion per year (Damiano 2005).
Another survey conducted by Reel Grobman & Associates (2005) among interior
design and facility planning decision-makers indicates that the respondents feel that
overcrowding, followed by IEQ complaints have the greatest negative impact on
employee productivity (Damiano 2001). According to the report, 40% of the respondents
said that overcrowding had the greatest negative effect, while 31% cited noise. Poor
indoor air quality (19%) and poor lighting (10%) were among other factors cited by those
surveyed. 74% of the respondents said they felt that workplace environmental conditions
were critical to employee productivity, while the rest said those conditions had some
impact (Reel Grobman & Associates 2005).
Very often, building owners or managers propose cost-saving measures without
considering the added costs due to lowered performance and productivity. An example of
this occurred when the Building Owners and Managers Association (BOMA) presented
to members about its success in beating back two provisions in ASHRAE Standard 62.1.
The article was published in BOMA's member newsletter "SkyLines" (Bas 1993). The
two provisions that were discussed by BOMA would have required renovation areas to be
secluded from the rest of the building by using negative pressure and mandated a 48-hour
period for purging contaminants from those areas following construction (Bas 1993).
BOMA stated that these requirements were hard to implement and also would have cost
building owners about $0.10 per ft2 for the first provision and $0.01 per ft2 for the second.
According to the BOMA analysis, rej ecting those provisions would save a building
owner approximately $11,000 for a 100,000-ft2 buildings. However, BOMA's analysis
did not take the loss of productivity (soft cost) into consideration. This soft cost would
increase if pollutants from construction activities were drawn into the occupied space of
the building. This has been a factor in numerous IEQ cases and was the principal cause of
the problems 10 years ago at the headquarters of the EPA (Bas 1993). This type of
situation may also result in people being injured and thus may result in multiple lawsuits.
But according to Bas (1993) just a small positive effect on productivity in a typical
100,000 ft2 COmmercial building could save more than significant amounts of money. If
we consider a building with an occupant density of 5 persons per 1,000 ft2 this would
result in a total of 500 people in the building. If an average annual salary of $30,000 were
assumed for each person in that building, this would be a total biweekly salary of
$576,923. If construction activities cause IEQ degradation thus the productivity decreases
by 0.5%, this would be result in a loss of $2,884 every two weeks that the situation
2 More information can be found online at httpl u\ \\ l\boma.org/.
Wargocki et al. (2000) conducted a study in order to evaluate the correlation
between IAQ and productivity in an office space. In order to define the performance
index Wargocki et al. (2000) defined four maj or tasks for the subj ects of the study. The
subj ects throughout different exposures of IAQ, were asked to perform simulated office
work consisting of four different tasks: text typing, addition, proofreading and creative
Wargocki et al. (2000) calculated and normalized the average number of characters
typed per minute, average number of correctly completed arithmetical calculations (units)
per hour, and average number of lines that were correctly proof-read per minute.
Performance was measured in three independent studies with different subj ects and could
have been influenced by group differences in the subj ects' experience, intellectual skills,
and level of practice. The normalization factors were the ratios between the mean of
performance at all air quality levels in all three studies to the means of performance at all
air quality levels in each individual study.
To estimate the overall performance of simulated office work, the Wargocki (2000)
calculated a performance index by dividing normalized performance at a specific level of
air quality by the mean of normalized performance of a specific task at all air quality
The findings of Wargocki's study clearly display the importance oflIAQ in office
buildings. Figure 2-8 shows an overall summary of the results of the study and displays
how productivity index increases when the ventilation rate increases and the pollution
o 1.061.7 us/mmoowr
~ l~osC~e~, /12' 0 'ir stmWoor
[ ~ c~\ic~c;'~,",P~~,~/lllr2.3 L/ls~rmoor
0 0.1 0.2 0.3 0.4 0.5 0.6 0.7 0.8 0.9 1
Sensory pollution load (olf/m2Roor)
Figure 2-8.Overall performance of simulated office work as a function of sensory
pollution load and ventilation rate (outdoor air) (Wargocki 2000).
One of the other soft costs associated with IAQ is the economic loss created by
health problems. In OSHA's effort to establish ventilation rules for nonindustrial workers,
they used the following justifications, in part3
The Agency estimates that the excess risk of developing the type of non-migraine
headache, which may need medical attention or restrict activity, which has been
associated with poor indoor air quality, is 57 per 1,000 exposed employees. In
addition the excess risk of developing upper respiratory symptoms, which are
severe enough to require medical attention or restrict activity, is estimated to be 85
per 1,000 exposed employees. These numbers are extrapolated from actual field
studies and therefore show the magnitude of the problem at present (OSHA 1994,
This amounts to an estimated average excess risk of lost work-time or diminished
productivity for approximately 6% of workforce, on any given day, in any facility that
exhibits poor indoor air quality (Damiano 2001). Additionally, approximately 9% are
estimated to be at excess risk and would probably incur lost time due to upper respiratory
sickness (Damiano 2001). In the same Lawrence Berkley/USDOE study mentioned
3 On December 17, 2001 OSHA withdrew its indoor air quality proposal and terminated the rulemaking
proceedings, see Federal Register 66:64946.
earlier, it is estimated that the direct cost to the U.S. economy due to increased allergies,
asthma and SBS symptoms were $7 to $23 billion per year (Damiano 2005). Damiano
(2001) claims that a large portion of these costs are estimated to be in the form of
workmen's compensation claims, health care insurance premiums and direct health care
costs mostly borne by the claimants' employers.
Milton et al. (2000) conducted one of the studies that focus on how employers need
to strike a balance between the energy costs of providing higher ventilation rates and the
health benefits from higher ventilation rates. The researchers of this study analyzed the
sick leave records of 3720 hourly workers for the calendar year of 1994. They used a
statistical technique called Poisson regression to analyze the relationship of sick leave
with ventilation rate category. The results generated by this study, when the ventilation
rate is increased by 25-cfm per person, are given in Table 2-5. The results indicate that by
increasing the ventilation rate by 25-cfm up to 50-cfm/person employers can save up to
$400 per employee assuming $40 hourly compensation rate.
Table 2-5. Potential economic costs and benefits of increasing ventilation rate by 25 ofm
Criteria Annual savings per employee
25 ofm/ workers x $3.22/cfm/year
Sick Leave Costs
Sick Leave avoided (1.50 days per -$480
Total Savings -$400
(Kumar & Fisk 2002)
IAQ related litigation cases are increasing along with the awareness of the effects
of poor IAQ in buildings. One of the buildings that exhibited the classic symptoms of
SBS was the DuPage County Courthouse in Wheaton, IL (Bas 1993). Bas (1993) reports
that one day in 1992, 25 employees were rushed to the hospital, suffering from shortness
of breath, headaches, and nausea. The four-story, $50 million building was closed
temporarily, affecting some 700 employees. The main problem with the courthouse as it
is with many other buildings with SBS, was inadequate ventilation. The county in this
case sought $3 million in damages for the design, engineering, and construction of the
building (Bas 1993). Another sick building was the Polk County Courthouse in Central
Florida. The building was opened in the summer of 1987 at a cost of $37 million. Due to
IAQ problems, the building was shut down, and the remediation of the building realized
at a cost of $26 million (Bas 1993).
Public attention and the litigation cases about IAQ issues have been continuously
increasing. The maj or reason for this increase is due to the growing belief among
employees that the employers owe them a safe and healthy working environment. Many
of the employees believe there is a higher possibility of winning this type of litigation
cases when there is a third responsible party involved. This may include anybody that is
involved in the design, construction or operation of the building. This list may include
HVAC engineers, contractors, subcontractors, property managers, building owners, and
designers as the maj or targets in IAQ related liability cases.
Optimization of IAQ
The continuous demand for sustainable and higher performance buildings has
resulted in the development of more sophisticated and efficient technologies. The main
goal of this development is to create "better" buildings that would satisfy many different
performance criteria. Papamichael (1998) describes the decision-making process in
relation to performance prediction and evaluation for design options in high performance
buildings in Figure 2-9. According to Figure 2-9 building design is the iterative
generation of alternative courses of actions in the form of technological combinations and
the prediction and evaluation of their performance. According to Papamichael (1998),
building performance is considered and communicated through the use of performance
indices, or parameters, based on the values of which designers judge appropriateness.
Some of these might include measures such as aesthetics, economics, and comfort.
Performance Prediction Comfort
Figure 2-9. Building design decisions require performance prediction and evaluation with
respect to multiple performance considerations (Papamichael 1998).
Atthaj ariyakul and Leephakpreeda (2004) conducted a study that presents another
example of parameter generation to measure Indoor Environmental Quality. They use
well-known parameter indices to quantify the degree of thermal comfort and air quality
for human and energy usage in an HVAC system. These parameter indices are directly or
indirectly defined in terms of time-dependent variables of the indoor-air condition in
building. An example of parameter generation by the use of Predicted Mean Vote (PMV)
and its indication as a thermal sensation index is given in Figure 2-10.
Air temperatum 3Ho
Air Relative humidtly -2 Wr
Airvelcit pg PM C 1 Silightly warm
Meaan Radianrt tmperatum -0Neta
(0.325e aorss +0.32) C .1 Slightly cool
Ckloting insulation -2Co
Six thermal variables Thermal sensation indicator
Figure 2-10. PMV and thermal sensation (Atthaj ariyakul & Leephakpreeda 2004).
There are several studies that concentrated on optimizing IEQ. Some of these
studies have concentrated on multi-criteria optimization by taking many concepts of IEQ
into consideration. The most studied items in the optimization studies are building shape,
thermal comfort, IAQ, and aesthetics. Al-Homoud (1997) used the direct search
optimization technique in order to optimize the building envelope. His study consisted 14
variables and used an external simulation program to perform the optimization. Nielsen
(2002) developed an optimization system by using Matlab to find the optimum
combination of the geometry and mix of building components to maximize building
performance. Caldas and Norford (2002) used a genetic algorithm (GA)4 as response
generator in optimal sizing of windows for optimal heating, cooling and lighting
performance. Additional examples of building envelope optimization for thermal comfort
and energy savings can be reached at Marks (1997). Bouchlaghem (2000) also presents
examples for optimization studies developed for environmental technology in buildings.
Wright (2002) presents an example for HVAC system optimization by using GA to
examine the trade-offs between HVAC system costs and thermal discomfort. Gustafsson
(2000) also studied optimization of HVAC systems, by mixed integer linear
programming. Linear programming (LP) has been used to solve optimization problems in
industries as diverse as banking, education, forestry, and construction scheduling and
planning. LP has been used as a tool to determine the optimal allocation of limited
resources in linear and deterministic problems. In a survey of Fortune 500 firms, 85% of
those responded said that they had used linear programming (Winston 1993). Kumar et
4 A genetic algorithm is a search technique used in computer science to find approximate solutions to
optimization and search problems. Genetic algorithms are a particular class of evolutionary algorithms that
use techniques inspired by evolutionary biology (Wikipedia 2006b).
al. (2003) have also studied various successful applications of the use of linear
programming in construction proj ects.
One of the most challenging issues in IAQ modeling derives from energy
efficiency constraints. One of the reasons for this is because the HVAC systems are
subject to time varying boundary conditions, and that the system operation must be
optimized at each boundary condition. Wright et al. (2002) in their work on optimizing
HVAC system design, optimized the model for 9 boundary conditions that represent a
period during the early morning, midday, and afternoon, in each of three seasons: winter,
fall/spring, and summer. Wright et al. (2002) in their study seeks to minimize the annual
energy use of the system. However they take the "annual energy use" as a weighted
average of the system capacity at each of the 9 operating conditions, the weights being
applied in accordance with the relative proportion of the prevailing climatic conditions.
Wright et al. (2002) configure the decision variables in a way to investigate the pay-off
between the HVAC system energy cost and the occupant thermal comfort. Wright et al.
(2002) also gives interesting examples for different pay-off situations such as the one
between capital cost of a system and the operating cost of a system. Figure 2-11 is an
illustration of the function between these different costs.
2:1, Capital :
Figure 2-11i. Example pay-off characteristic (Wright et al.2002).
Wright et al. (2002) group the decision variables under two categories: system
operation and size of the HVAC system. Wright et al. (2002) specify three optimization
* The operating cost of the HVAC system for the design days
* The maximum thermal discomfort during occupancy on each design day
* The infeasibility obj ective
The constraints in the study can be summarized as follows:
* Restriction on design of the coils
* Performance of the supply fan
* Requirements to ensure that the system has sufficient capacity
* Air velocity to limit noise
* Water velocity limit to prevent excessive pipe erosion
* Fan speed
* Volume flow rate through the fan
* HVAC capacity to meet required supply air temperature and flow rate
Although there are some successful examples of optimization for different aspects
of indoor air quality, none of these studies look at the problem from the building owner
and manager point of view. Thus these studies generally ignore the soft costs associated
with the various values of decision variables. Many of the previous studies are
constructed for optimization of system component design thus they rely on mostly
technical engineering variables and constraints. This research approaches the problem as
a prescreening of the sustainable management problem and simplifies the engineering
calculations since the goal is not to find the optimum component design but to find the
optimum comparison of alternative values in relation to their performance change and
associated cost per change in air quality.
Review of Literature Summary
The body of knowledge for IAQ has been expanding tremendously since thel980s.
Many studies have been conducted. However there are still gaps in our knowledge of
IAQ in buildings. European Commission (1996) listed a comprehensive list of
recommendations for the researchers and the industry in order to improve indoor quality
and energy efficiency of buildings. Some of the areas that require further research could
be listed as follows:
* Contaminants and sources: Identify contaminants and occurring occupant exposure,
safe and acceptable emissions, safe and acceptable levels of contaminants in
buildings, contaminant sources, and contaminant source management.
* Building assessment: Assess the built environment from energy, indoor air quality,
and climate aspects.
* Building systems: Identify cost-effective low energy systems for providing high
quality IEQ levels.
* Performance measurement: Identify simple, and effective methods that include both
energy efficiency and IAQ measures, for predicting the performance of buildings.
* Operation and maintenance of buildings: Identify the effectiveness of means and
methods of assessing and controlling existing buildings, including measurement
techniques to quantify the levels of IAQ.
* Changes to building design and operation: Identify the problems with IAQ caused
by the force to reduce energy consumption, and identify strong optimization
* Experimental data: Generate data that can be used for statistical correlation
analyses for factors affecting IAQ, as well as data quantifying productivity in
relation to air cleaning and ventilation rates.
The obj ective of this research is to develop a decision model for optimizing the
control of indoor air pollutants in commercial buildings in Florida. This chapter briefly
describes the nature of the research and the specific methods and concepts that satisfy the
research goals. After exploring the research questions, in the research design section, the
scope of the research and its main steps are discussed. The research methodology section
briefly discusses the use of linear programming as a tool to solve the optimization
problem. This chapter also clarifies the target populations that are the subj ect of research
or who may benefit from the decision model. The details of the steps taken in the
methodology of this research and the detailed configuration of the research model and
parameters are given in Chapter 4.
The maj or research question to be investigated in this dissertation is given below:
* Can an optimization model be developed to select the optimal IAQ measures in
commercial buildings in Florida to meet or exceed the standards required by code?
This study also explores the answers to the following question:
* What are the decision criteria for building owners and managers when choosing a
specific indoor air management option?
The summary of the scope of the research and the outline of the dissertation is
given in Figure 3-1.
RESIDMENTAL COMEIL INSIUTOA INDTIA
LIT.ATE ENERGY SIEQ A AT EYLN MATERIALS
ASETSORMALDEHYD$ PESTICIDES BIOLOGICAL POLLUTANTS NO2 R ADO~ LEAD ~OBACCCd CO
TEP 3 4
T NUTY UVY
DECISIN SUPPORT MODEL (DSM)
VICE SYSTEM ANALYSIS
IQ IAQ ASSESSMENT > STEP 2
STEP FINAL DS MODEL
Figure 3-1. Research design.
The steps that are illustrated in Figure 3-1 are explained below in more detail.
Step 1. Identify the indoor-air-pollutant-related IAQ hurdles of the building
One of the hurdles that the building industry is facing is to manage the quality of
indoor air. This problem occurs due to financial constraints and the trade-off between
better indoor air quality and energy efficiency of a building. Some of the consequences of
a better IAQ are healthy, clean, and sustainable air and air systems. The IAQ related
cautions should be considered from the design of the proj ect through the construction,
and the postconstruction (operation) phases of the building. Industry is facing several
problems on each of these phases. This dissertation conducts a broad literature search in
order to examine these hurdles under two categories:
* Identify the indoor air pollutant threats for the buildings and its occupants.
* Identify the problems regarding the current indoor air quality technologies in
This research first identifies the above problems of the building industry by using
qualitative research through broad literature review (See Chapter 2). Many studies
present the problems regarding the current IAQ technologies in the buildings. There are
also studies that show the financial consequences of poor IAQ in buildings. This study
defines these problems in terms of their soft and hard financial consequences.
One of the alternative methodologies for this step of the research could be
conducting a regional survey among the subj ects of the research in Florida. Building
Owners and Managers Association (BOMA) would be an adequate source of subj ects.
This would help clarify the specific IAQ related technical and qualitative problems of the
Step 2. Evaluate the types of IAQ options to control indoor air quality and the
factors that affect IAQ in commercial buildings.
Types of IAQ control techniques and the factors that affect the IAQ in commercial
buildings have already been described in Chapter 2. This step of the research ensures that
the model to be created includes a solution that takes all the factors affecting IAQ into
account. The comparison of the available technologies with the optimal solutions in the
model enables the researcher to make suggestions towards systems that may not exist but
would be a better option than any existing systems. The types of indoor air quality control
techniques will include:
* Improved ventilation
* Air cleaning
This study evaluates the above options in terms of their technology, physical effects
on IAQ, and the operational factors such as the policies and regulations. This study
includes the national ASHRAE Standard 62. 1-2001 for acceptable indoor ventilation as a
lower constraint assuming that the Florida Building Code mandates all buildings to meet
or exceed values mentioned in these standards.
Step 3. Evaluate the true costs of indoor air quality control techniques by
combining LCC analysis, and soft and hard costs.
Combining the lifecycle costs, other hard costs, and soft costs generates the true
costs of indoor air quality control. From an engineering perspective, LCC are all costs
from proj ect inception to disposal of equipment. The LCC analysis includes the
ownership and operating costs and uses common value engineering procedures such as
described in Isola (1997). However the users of the model will be able to choose the
values such as discount and inflation rates.
The required cost parameters and the methodology to help users carry out the cost
analysis is provided by an EPA study "A Preliminary Methodology for Evaluating Cost-
Effectiveness of Alternative Indoor Air Quality Approaches" by Henschel (1999), and by
the actual supplier quotes for the system components. The analysis includes
determination of two different types of costs:
* Hard costs
There are three areas of soft costs that engineers and their clients need to consider
in the design for acceptable IAQ in any building proj ect: the impact on productivity of
the occupants, positive or negative; effects on health of the occupants, positive or
negative; and the risk of litigation and/or legal liability that may result from any negative
impacts. The most compelling category out of three areas is the one associated with
worker productivity. In order to calculate the soft costs, this research uses the results of a
study by Wargocki et al. (2000). Wargocki et al. (2000) use the amount of outdoor air as
the only independent variable in a controlled office environment, in order to determine
the function between IAQ and productivity. This function provides a performance index
associated with different IAQ conditions. The performance index is used in this research
to calculate the savings that may potentially be generated by increasing the amount of
work output over the working hours. Soft costs associated with health and litigation, are
kept out of the model due to their stochastic nature.
Step 4. Combine the true costs, and the control options, to define and generate a
Chapter 4 defines the details of the optimization model. However the procedures
for building the decision model follows the following five-step procedure:
* Formulate the problem.
Defining the problem includes specifying the obj ectives and the parts of the system
that must be studied before the problem can be solved. In this research the obj ective is to
minimize the true costs of an IAQ control option by increasing the amount of OA, and
the air cleaned, inside a given commercial building.
* Observe the system.
In this phase the research is oriented towards the collection of data that would
affect the problem determined in the previous section. The data to be collected include:
how much an increase in productivity saves the owner in costs; how much an increase in
the supplied air amount would increase productivity; how much hard costs are associated
with a unit increase in the amount of air or the treatment of the air; how much energy cost
occurs by an increase in the unit of outdoor air supply or recirculation air; etc.
* Formulate a mathematical model of the problem.
In this phase a mathematical model of the problem will be developed (Figure 3-2).
The model developed in this research includes:
0 Decision Variables
o Obj ective Function
Figure 3-2 illustrates a preliminary illustration of a possible linear modeling
example with only two decision variables. It is shown in Figure 3-2, how the value of the
obj ective function of a model might change while changing the values for the decision
variables (X1 and X2). According to Figure 3-2, the optimum result of the model would
fall on to one of the extreme points around the feasible region that is defined by different
Figue 3-. Exmpl illstraionfor he popoed~ LP model
Verifyand use he mode foT)rprdcin
At his step c th ol st dtr inei h oe eeoe ntetidse sa
incuds te nfomtio from~ sensiivitanaysis
that te best Eamltraie mlutayo not xs.Hwvr the rps L model hlst hoetefail
StVepf 5.d Prsen the roesltso aned cnluions.
In this step, the model sthadt risgnerae in Step 4wll bee oprsned along hr withp the
possible rersulsfrdfeentai oh ceases.ld Tis stdep willo ianclue thi te reommendaios fompr
otimum ilbl alternatives asQ wellro asn th ft re workre for further deeopn the mdl h
results will include the sensitivity analysis in order to determine the range of validity of
the optimization and the managerial implications.
This research uses a quantitative methodology that combines LCC analysis with the
soft cost analysis in order to optimize the true costs of indoor air quality control
technologies and strategies in buildings. However, this research also uses qualitative
literature review techniques to explore the criteria when the decision makers of the
building industry are choosing specific IAQ control options.
This research utilizes the methodology of operations research, which is a
quantitative methodology that offers considerable assistance to the building owners and
managers in their quest for optimal solutions. With the help of mathematical
programming this research provides the owners or managers increased ability to analyze
their IAQ problems and generate solutions in a structured manner. Linear programming
(LP) is used as a preliminary option for this research.
There are basically two assumptions implicit in an LP model. One is that any
relationship of two or more variables must satisfy the characteristics of a linear
relationship. Second, the model uses deterministic assumptions meaning that the
variances in the values are not significant enough to warrant a nondeterministic approach.
In summary, an LP model may be considered as a potential tool in determining the
optimal allocation of limited resources if and only if the situation under consideration
adequately satisfies the linear and deterministic assumptions. In a real world situation
some of the constraints and variables in a decision process may have nonlinear
relationships such as the relationship between productivity and IAQ. This research
simplifies these relationships into a linear level by using piece-wise linear
In order to solve the model there are many software available. Excel Solver 9 is
one of those alternatives and is used to solve the model created in this research.
There are two target groups that can use the results of this research. One of these is
the building owners and managers. The reason this research is oriented towards the
building owners and managers, is that owners and managers are the investors in a
building's IAQ system. For this reason an important factor is to utilize their perspective
to develop the decision model. The second group includes almost everyone that is
involved in the creation of a building. This includes architects, engineers, and contractors.
This group is the one that will benefit most from the results of this research. Since many
times owners leave the decisions to their representatives, this study will be useful for
experts that hold the decision power on investing in the IAQ of a building.
Summary of Methodology
The summary of the proposed methodology is illustrated in Figure 3-3 parallel and
compared to Simon's decision-making process (Simon 1960). The proposed methodology
involves similarities to Simon's decision-modeling process. In this research, well-known
intelligence, design, choice, and implementation phases introduced by Simon (1960) are
transformed into research, speculation, decision, and implementation phases. In the
research phase, the options for different indoor air quality levels will be evaluated. This
phase also covers the research on hurdles of the industry regarding IAQ and the
SChapter 4 provides a broad description of piece-wise linear approximation.
generation of the maj or parameters of the model. In the speculation phase, the
optimization model will be configured in terms of obj ective function, decision variables,
and constraints. The decision phase mainly covers the solution to the model, and the
implementation phase is the output of specific recommendations by using the results.
Formulate a M~odel
Set Criteria for Choice
Search for Alternatives
Predict and Measure Outcomes
IAQ Ruesurchl Process
True Cost Analysis
Formulate a ModelI
CHOICE PHASE DECISION PHASE
Solution to the Model Comparison of Alternatives
Sensitivity Analysis Solution to the Model
Selection of Alternatives U V Selection of the Optimum
Plan for Implementation Plan for Implementation
IMPLEMENTATION PHASE 1U IMPLEMENTATION PHASE
Implementation of Soluho~n Output Speolfic G;uidelines
Figure 3-3. Summary of methodology in comparison to Simon' s decision modeling
process. (Simon 1960)
DEFINING PARAMETERS AND THE OPTIMIZATION MODEL
The purpose of this chapter is to present the details of the methodology that was
briefly introduced in Chapter 3. This purpose includes broad definitions of the
methodologies used to generate the parameters and to generate the optimization model.
In optimization problems, researchers generally use already defined parameters for
generating the obj ective function. Parameter generation in this research is an important
part of finding a solution to the generated model. Although many optimization studies
leave this phase to the user, this research is generating the parameters in order to provide
default values to the users. The parameters that are being used in the model are generated
by Life Cycle Cost (LCC) analysis in the following areas:
* LCC for increased outdoor air (OA) to achieve desired reduction in contaminant
concentration using increased ventilation by a central or dedicated unit.
* LCC for the increased amount of air cleaned, by calculating the air cleaner
efficiency required to achieve desired reduction in contaminant concentration.
In order to calculate the parameters above, this research adapts a preliminary
methodology that is developed by the EPA (Henschel 1999). EPA's study provides a
number of worksheets to help calculate the LCC of improved ventilation, and air cleaning
techniques (Appendix A). Parallel to the obj ectives of this research, EPA' s worksheets
are generated as a part of a pre-screening tool designed for decision makers with limited
engineering knowledge. These worksheets are slightly modified in order to support the
parameter development required by the model. For example, this research reinforces
EPA's preliminary methodology with more up-to-date quotes on equipment prices from
several vendors as well as RS Means and government inflation rates. Although the EPA
developed a number of these worksheets to calculate costs of different IAQ management
options, this research refers to only a total of six worksheets. However some EPA
worksheets that are not referred to in this research are converted into and used as simple
equations. Definitions and the brief descriptions of the six worksheets adapted from EPA
are given below:
* Worksheet 1: This worksheet is designed to help estimate the installed costs for
increased OA by using a central unit. It calculates the increased heating and cooling
capacities required to condition the increased OA and suggests costs per unit
increases in capacities.
* Worksheet 2: This worksheet uses the same methodology as Worksheet 1 except
uses different unit cost suggestions to estimate the installed costs for increased OA
by a dedicated OA unit.
* Worksheet 3: This worksheet helps calculate the annual operating costs that occur
due to increased OA ventilation. Worksheet 3 takes energy efficiency ratings of the
HVAC equipment as well as the cooling and heating energy requirements in order
to calculate an annual cost.
* Worksheet 4: This worksheet helps to estimate the annual maintenance costs for
increased OA by calculating additional labor and hours required for maintenance of
* Worksheet 5: This worksheet combines the annual maintenance, operating, and
annualized installed costs to estimate the total annualized costs for increased OA.
* Worksheet 6: Worksheet helps estimating the annual operating costs for central
indoor air cleaners by calculating the energy consumption and suggesting
approximate umit costs.
In this methodology, the rough estimates are set as a screening tool to assist the
model in making eliminations among the potential decision variables. The better cost
estimates can be developed for the control options if the required HVAC expertise is
available in-house or as a consulting service. The obj ective of developing these cost
parameters is to facilitate a quick, inexpensive evaluation by users who may not have the
required engineering knowledge for an extensive cost analysis. The costs that are used in
the computation are the total annual costs. This includes the annual operation and
maintenance costs, and annualized installed costs.
Estimating the Costs of Improved Ventilation
The first step in assessing the costs associated with increasing the OA ventilation
rate is to estimate the OA increase that will be required. Equation 4-1, based on EPA' s
worksheets, presents the step-wise procedure for estimating the needed increase,
assuming that dilution is the sole mechanism, which reduces the contaminant
d x (a b)
C = Incremental increase in outdoor airflow rate required to achieve the desired reduction
in concentration (cfm).
a = Current average concentration of the contaminant of concern in the building (ppmy).
b = Average concentration to which "a" should be reduced (ppmy).
d = Current flow of OA into the building (cfm).
It is assumed in Equation 4-1 that the concentration of the contaminant of concern
is zero in the OA, and that the indoor air is well mixed so that pollutant concentrations
assumed at one point represent concentrations at all points inside a building. In this case
pollutant concern is assumed to be a homogenate problem throughout the whole section
of the building. The OA being provided by the air handler is correspondingly being
increased to treat that whole section of the building in a consistent way. In this case, as a
first approximation, one might use Equation 4-1 to estimate the additional clean air that
would have to be provided to effectively reduce the concentration in the building.
Note that Equation 4-1 disregards the added supply air increasing the mixing of the
local contaminant throughout the area served by the air handler. Also the supply air,
which is largely recirculated air, will thus increasingly differ from the assumption that
there is zero concentration of a given contaminant in the ventilating air. The user would
have to consider treating the building by moderately increasing OA flows to the entire
portion of the problematic area if a localized source were to be addressed by an increase
in direct supply air.
In this study, the model requires the cost per one efm unit increase in OA
ventilation as an input. Consequently the value of C in Equation 4-1 can be taken as 1
(one) ofm to further develop the LCC analysis. Thus the user can calculate the cost
associated with increasing the OA amount by one efm unit and use the result as a default
value in the optimization model. The details of these calculations can be seen in the
upcoming sections. The LCC calculations of the improved ventilation will be explored
under three main categories. These are:
* Installed Costs
* Operation (Energy) Costs
* Maintenance Costs
Estimating Installed Costs for Increased Ventilation
According to EPA, the existing HVAC equipment needs to be modified or adjusted
when an increase in the OA is required (Henschel 1999). Consequently an installed cost
would occur for making these modifications. An important factor in this study is the
concentration on only new construction cases. The installed costs in new construction
cases are in fact the incremental increase in the installed costs of the mechanical system
resulting from the adjustments that are made in the specifications to increase the OA rate.
Enlarged central units. Worksheet 1 in Appendix A presents a procedure for
estimating the installed costs associated with an increasing capacity of the central HVAC
units to handle increased OA in the new construction case. Worksheet 1 helps calculate
the installed costs due to increased heating and cooling capacities required to condition
the increase in OA. This worksheet is adapted from EPA' s preliminary methodology for
evaluating cost-effectiveness of alternative indoor air quality approaches (Henschel
1999). The worksheet presented in EPA' s methodology includes an option of entering up
to 3 (three) HVAC units. However in this dissertation calculations are modified for only
one HVAC unit. In this case, it is assumed that a system capable of handling and
conditioning the increased OA flow is now to be installed instead of the system that had
originally been designed for the building that has not been built yet.
Worksheet 1 is based on the following circumstances (Henschel 1999):
* Cooling and Heating Capacity: The originally designed cooling and heating
capacities are increased for the HVAC unit to handle the increased OA flow to
itself. The air handler, cooling coils, condenser, compressor, heating elements, and
controls of each unit are re-designed as required before construction. Since this
preliminary worksheet assumes direct-expansion cooling units having electric heat,
the calculations would be less accurate for systems that have chillers and furnaces.
* OA Intake Fan (if present): In cases where one or more OA intake fans are required
in the new building, the worksheet assumes that intake fans of greater capacity are
installed in lieu of the lower capacity, originally designed fans. In the model
described in this research, this item has not been included in the cost calculations
for testing purposes.
* In systems without economizers the worksheet assumes that intake and exhaust
ducting of larger dimensions are installed instead of the original intake and exhaust
*In systems with no economizers but that have one or more central exhaust fans,
worksheet assumes that exhaust fans of greater capacity are installed instead of the
In order to use the calculations in Worksheet 1, the required increases in heating
and cooling capacities are taken from ASHRAE (1997) by using 1% design values for the
cooling dry-bulb/mean wet-bulb temperatures. These values for Miami are 4.6-
tons/1000cfm for the required increase in cooling capacity and 6-kW/1000cfm for the
required increase in heating capacity. The users can modify these values depending on
the location of the proj ect. Table 4-1 lists these values for several cities in the US.
Table 4-1. Incremental increases in cooling and heating capacities required by increases
in OA ventilation ra es.
Required Increase in Required Increase in
City Cooling Capacity Heating Capacity
(tons pr1000 cfm OA) (kW pr1000 cfm OA)
Albuquerque, NM ~0 16
Atlanta, GA 3.3 15
Boston, MA 2.7 18
Chicao, IL 3.3 22
Cincinnati, OH 3.9 18
Cleveland, OH 2.7 20
Dallas-Fort Worth, TX 3.9 14
Denver, CO ~0 21
Houston, TX 4.6 12
Los Angeles, CA 0.5 8
Miami, FL 4.6 12
Minneapolis, MN 2.7 26
New York, NY 3.3 17
Omaha, NE 3.9 23
Pittsburh PA 2.1 20
Raleigh, NC 3.9 16
St. Louis, MO 3.9 20
San Francisco, CA ~0 10
Seattle, WA 0.5 13
Washingtn D.C. 3.9 16
These values in Table 4-1 are computed by EPA using 99% heating dry-bulb
temperatures for the various cities, as defined by ASHRAE standards. The heating
capacity presented in the table is the incremental power required to increase 1,000 ofm of
outdoor air from the 99% value of outdoor temperature to an indoor temperature of 70 oF
and 50% relative humidity.
New dedicated OA units. Worksheet 2 in Appendix A presents a procedure
developed by EPA for estimating the installed costs associated with the use of a
dedicated-OA unit in the new construction case. Calculations in Worksheet 2 assume that
since a dedicated-OA unit is to be installed in a new building, it will be designed to
condition all of the OA entering the building, rather than just the incremental increases in
The EPA presents Worksheet 2, based on the following circumstances (Henschel
* Cooling and Heating Capacity: One or more rooftop direct-expansion systems with
electric heat, dedicated to treating the incoming OA, are added to the original
design. These added units have the capacity required to condition all of the OA that
is now to be supplied to the building. The cooling and heating capacities of all of
the originally designed HVAC units in the building are reduced, since the original
units will no longer be required to condition OA, providing a cost savings that
partially offsets the cost of the dedicated-OA units. The linear model that is
developed in this research, gives the user the option of entering a value for fixed
installed costs, which allows the model, produce more sophisticated decisions if
* OA Intake Fan (If present): The air handlers associated with the dedicated-OA units
become the intake fans for the entire OA flow into the building. In systems that
included OA intake fans in the original design, these intake fans can now be
eliminated, which results in cost savings.
* OA Intake Ducting: In systems with economizers, it is assumed that the increased
total volume of OA being supplied by the dedicated-OA units is delivered into the
originally designed OA intake ducting with no modifications to the original design.
* In systems without economizers the worksheet assumes that intake ducting and
exhaust ducting of larger dimensions is installed instead of the original ducting.
* For systems that have central exhaust fans but do not have economizers, Worksheet
2 assumes that exhaust fans of greater capacity are installed instead of the
originally designed fans.
Estimating Operating and Maintenance Costs for Increased Ventilation
Estimating the annual operating and maintenance costs is an important step in LCC
analysis. In order to complete this estimate, in addition to the installed costs this
dissertation suggests using the worksheets in Appendix A, provided by EPA (Henschel
Annual operating costs. EPA suggests that the annual operating cost associated
with an increase in ventilation rate can be the incremental energy cost resulting from:
* Cooling and heating the increased flow of outdoor air
* Operating the enlarged or new intake or exhaust fans (if applicable)
Worksheet 3 in Appendix A presents the method to calculate the annual operating
costs for increased ventilation. However it is important to note that this methodology
should only be used when thorough modeling of the building energy consumption and
costs is not possible.
The system size and characteristics depends on the climate of different regions as
well as the number of days and hours the OA is supplied and conditioned (Westphalen &
Koszalinski 1999). EPA states that a calculation of heating energy consumption that is
based only on the total heating degree-days in a specific geographical location may be
misleading; the mechanical system may not be supplying OA to the building during the
middle of the night, which is the coldest period of a day. This would definitely impact the
heating degree-day figure, which would alter the calculations based on only the
geographical location (Henschel 1999).
Accordingly, the EPA' s methodology to calculate the operating costs has utilized
the DOE-2 building energy computer model to compute the required energy output from
the mechanical system per incremental efm of OA in a variety of climates with
alternative mechanical systems. EPA's method assumes that OA is being supplied for 13
hours per day and 5 days per week. Since this research is concentrating on commercial
buildings this assumption is also valid for the types of buildings for which the model is
being generated. The results in the form of the average Btu of cooling energy output and
Btu of heating energy output per incremental efm for the different cities are given in
Table 4-2. The values in Table 4-2 are generated for a small office building for which the
input was available from Henschel (1999). The figure for each geographical location is an
average for alternative variable-volume and constant-volume systems, and for OA flow
rates at a range of 5 to 60 ofm/person at an occupancy density of 7 persons per 1000 ft
The values in Table 4-2 are calculated with the assumption that the OA is supplied to the
building 13 hours/day (6 am to 7 pm) on weekdays only (excluding holidays)
Table 4-2. Incremental annual cooling and heating energy requirements per unit increase
in OA ventilation rate by geographical location.
Incremental Additional Incremental Additional
Annual Cooling Energy Annual Heating Energy
City Required per Incremental Required per Incremental
Increase in OA Intake Rate Increase in OA Intake Rate
(Btu/yr per incremental efm) (Btu/yr per incremental efm)
Chicag,IL 13,000 41,000
Miami, FL 67,000 200
Minneaois, MN 13,000 63,000
Northern Virginia 20,000 25,000
Raleigh, NC 26,000 16,000
Seattle, WA 3,000 28,000
In Worksheet 3, the annual incremental cost of energy is computed by using the
required energy output from the mechanical system and also by taking the system
efficiency and the unit cost of fuel or electricity into account. In the same sheet users also
have the option to calculate the energy cost for new or enlarged fans.
Annual maintenance costs: Worksheet 4 originally developed by EPA in
Appendix A provides a preliminary methodology to calculate the annual maintenance
costs for increased ventilation. The EPA's preliminary methodology assumes that
increases in ventilation cause an increase in maintenance costs only when a new intake or
exhaust fan is added or when a new dedicated OA HVAC unit is added. The EPA
worksheets assume no increase in maintenance to result from enlargements of existing
equipment. Although the worksheet is presented in the Appendix A for some users that
may require it, in this research upper bound constraints are avoiding one of the two cases
that were explained above. Thus the input data used in this research to test the model,
assumes that there would be no significant change in the maintenance costs of the system.
As for users that want to add the maintenance cost input to their model, the worksheet
suggests figures of 5 hr/yr for each fan, and 20 hr/yr for each dedicated OA unit. The
labor rate including or excluding the overhead can be obtained from the latest version of
Recommended Standard (RS) Means.
Estimating total annualized costs for increased ventilation: Worksheet 5 in
Appendix A is designed to combine the annualized installed costs with annual operating
and maintenance costs associated with the increased ventilation. However the model
developed in this research uses two different Eigures for the input cost data. It is possible
to combine the installed costs and the annual costs into one single annual cost and
eliminate the fixed cost figure. It is also possible to keep the annual O&M costs separate
from the installed costs. Worksheet 5 should be used if the user decides to combine all
the costs into one annual cost. In this case the annualized amount for the installed costs is
determined using the Capital Recovery Factor (CRF). The user can select the number of
years over which the installed cost is to be amortized, and the interest rate that is to be
charged. The number of years will generally be the estimated lifetime of the system
equipment. The value for the interest rate is the rate that is being paid on money
borrowed to install the equipment, or the interest rate that could have been obtained on
the money if it was invested rather than being used for the installation (Kirk & Isola
1995). Where "n" is the number of years, and "i" is the interest rate CRF could be
calculated by using the Equation 4-2 given below (Kirk & Isola 1995):
CRF = [i( + i)"] /[(1+ i)" 1] (4-2)
The CRF is the fraction of the initial cost that must be amortized each year if after n
years, the initial cost is to be recovered with an "i" percent annual interest rate being
charged on the unpaid balance. Consequently the total annualized cost computed in the
Worksheet 5 is the sum of:
* The CRF multiplied by the incremental total installed cost
* The incremental annual operating cost
* The incremental annual maintenance cost
Estimating the Costs for Air Cleaning
Sometimes it may be appropriate to consider the use of air cleaners to remove the
contaminants) of concern. For practical reasons, air cleaners are usually considered
when ventilation and source management are not the feasible options (Henschel 1999).
The model developed allows use all of these techniques together when feasible.
Methodology to calculate the costs of air cleaning includes two classes of indoor air
particulate cleaners: "media" air cleaners and electronic air cleaners. Media air cleaners
* Pleated fi1ter panels
* Bag fi1ters
* Variations of the above types (e.g., pocket filters)
Electronic air cleaners are electrostatic precipitators. The EPA methodology used
only considers particulate air cleaners with an average removal efficiency of 65% or
greater as measured in ASHRAE standard 52. 1-1992 (ASHRAE 1992). The methodology
also assumes that lower efficiency filters are already present on the HVAC system, to
protect the fan and coils. Users of the model also have the option to modify the cost data
by including high-efficiency particulate air (HEPA) filters, which offer 99.97% removal
efficiency. These types of filters are generally used in hospital operation rooms. The cost
data generated by EPA' s methodology does not include HEPA filters.
The air cleaners considered for gaseous contaminants involve the use of beds of
dry, granular material acting by physical adsorption, chemical absorption, or catalysis
(Henschel 1999). Such air cleaners can be considered for the control of a variety of
gaseous contaminants (ASHRAE 1995), however EPA' s cost calculations are more
focused on the VOCs.
The worksheets that are adapted from EPA's preliminary study address the
incremental costs of a larger fan motor and of removing the heat generated by the larger
motor. However the worksheets do not intend to calculate any costs associated with
modifying the mechanical room or the HVAC equipment to house the air cleaner, since
these costs will be very building specific. Additionally, the installed costs for the air
cleaners computed in EPA' s worksheets assume that there are no particular complications
in the installation, which would significantly increase installation labor hours and
Estimating Installed Costs for Air Cleaners
The following items generate the costs associated with installation of a central air
* Obtaining and installing the air cleaner itself
* A larger motor for the central air handling fan, to compensate for the pressure drop
across the cleaner (for media filters and gaseous air cleaners)
* Cooling capacity that may potentially increase to remove the additional heat
produced by the larger fan
In order to calculate the installed costs for the air cleaners, Equation 4-3 can be
used as extracted from the worksheets developed by Henschel (1999). According to the
equation, installed costs are a simple function of total flow through the air cleaner and a
vendor quote for 1000 ofm of OA.
E = QxV (4-3)
E = Installed costs
Q = Total flow through the air cleaner
V = Vendor quote ($/1000 ofm) OR Refer to Table 4-3.
In Equation 4-3 it is important that the users first select an appropriate air cleaner
based upon the performance requirements. With this selection the user may then either
obtain an estimate from a vendor for this type of air cleaner, or may use a simplified
option given by Table 4-3. The table presents rough installed costs per 1,000 ofm air for
different types of air cleaners.
a Adapted from Henschel (1996), updated by inflation rates from http://inflationdata. com.
The installed costs given in Table 4-3 include the cost of taking the air through the
filter and of the increase in fan motor horsepower, but exclude any costs for increased
cooling or heating capacity.
Estimating Operating and Maintenance Costs for Air Cleaners
Annual operating costs: The methodology by Henschel (1999) includes the
following items when calculating the annual operating costs:
* The increase in power consumption by the fan motor
* Power consumption by the corona wires and plates (electronic air cleaner)
* Added power consumption by the cooling system
Worksheet 6 in Appendix A presents a method for estimating the energy costs. The
worksheet that is modified from Henschel (1999) estimates incremental additional fan
horsepower requirements by multiplying the total airflow through the air cleaner times
the average pressure drop across it, accounting for fan/motor efficiency, and applying the
appropriate conversion factors. Annual energy later is calculated by multiplying this
power requirement times the number of hours per year that the fan will be operating. The
annual operating cost for the larger fan motor is determined from this energy
consumption and based on the unit cost of electricity.
The default values are available for pressure drop, fan efficiency, hours of fan
operation, and unit energy costs. If the user does not have these values available the
following values can be used:
Total Unit Installed Cost a
Type of Air Cleaner
Pleated panel cartridge filter, ASHRAE 65 142
Pleated panel cartridge filter, ASHRAE 85 142
Pleated panel cartridge filter, ASHRAE 95 148
Electronic Air Cleaner 496
Table 4-3 Approximate i s
* Pressure drop: 1 in. WG
* Electric Input Ratio (EIR) for the cooling system: 0.34 kW/kW
* Hours of fan operation: 3,276 hr/yr (for 13 hr/day, 5 day/wk)
Worksheet 6 in this research calculates the operating costs of media air cleaners for
particulate matter. However preliminary methodologies for calculating cost of "electronic
air cleaners for particulate matter" and the cost of "air cleaners for gaseous contaminants"
are available through EPA.
Annual maintenance costs: Maintenance costs for air cleaning include the
materials and labor costs associated with periodic replacement of the fi1ter media for
media particulate air cleaners. Henschel (1999) developed a worksheet that is converted
to Equation 4-4 in order to calculate a rough estimate for the maintenance of media
particulate air cleaners. Henschel (1999), in his study, includes more information
regarding different types of cleaners if required. Table 4-4 includes the price information
to be used in Equation 4-4. If the user has more proj ect specific data, then these data
could be easily replaced with more accurate ones in the model.
T = ($/yr) (4-4)
1000 x N
T = Annual cost of replacing the particulate media filters
u, = Approximate unit cost for replacing filters per MCFM (Table 4-4)
F,= Amount of air through cleaner i (i=1,2,3) (cfm)
N = Number of times per year that the fi1ter media will be replaced.
Table 4-4. Approximate replacement costs of media cartridges for particulate media air
Unit Cost of Replacement Cartridgesa
Type of Air Cleaner
Plated pael cartridges, ASHRAE 65 45
Plated pael cartridges, ASHRAE 85 45
Plated pael cartridges, ASHRAE 95 50
a Adapted from Henschel (1996), updated by inflation rates from http://inflationdata. com.
It is assumed that only minimal labor is required to install the replacement of cartridges.
Estimation of Income Function from Increased Productivity due to Increased IAQ
The effects of indoor air quality on productivity were discussed in Chapter 2.
Wargocki (2000) conducted one of the important studies that this research has used in
order to build the cost data for productivity. Wargocki (2000) conducted three studies that
involved 90 subj ects. Using similar procedures and blind exposures, the studies showed
that increasing air quality (by decreasing the pollution load or by increasing the
ventilation rate, with otherwise constant indoor climate conditions) could improve the
performance of simulated office work (text typing, addition, and proof-reading). The
results imply that doubling the outdoor air supply rate at constant pollution load, or a
two-fold decrease of pollution load at constant ventilation rate, can increase overall
performance by 1.9%. Inspired from Wargocki's results, imaginary data in Table 4-5 was
generated to calculate the increased income as a result of increased productivity.
Table 4-5. Ventilation rate (cfm pe eson) vs. pefrmance index
17 0.99000 44 1.021972 71 1.028903 98 1.032958 125 1.035835
20 1.000000 47 1.023025 74 1.029444 101 1.033322 128 1.036109
23 1.006931 50 1.023978 77 1.029957 104 1.033672 131 1.036375
26 1.010986 53 1.024849 80 1.030445 107 1.034011 134 1.036635
29 1.013862 56 1.025649 83 1.030910 110 1.034339 137 1.036888
32 1.016094 59 1.026390 86 1.031354 113 1.034657 140 1.037135
35 1.017917 62 1.027080 89 1.031780 116 1.034965 143 1.037376
38 1.019459 65 1.027725 92 1.032188 119 1.035263
41 1.020794 68 1.028332 95 1.032580 122 1.035553
The data listed in Table 4-5 is generated by using log (e) function and is partially
integrated in the MS Excel 9 sheet where the model uses a piece-wise linearization in
order to control the estimated profit generated by the total amount of outdoor air. One of
the reasons for choosing this method is due to the limitations of the linear programming
on a nonlinear problem. If the nonlinear productivity function is linearized by using only
one line, the model produces results for either the lower bound or upper bound that is
defined with the constraints. Once the profit due to increased productivity becomes more
than the cost, the model pushes the results towards bringing as much air as possible. On
the other hand, if the profit from increased productivity comes out to be less than the cost
of bringing OA, then the model goes down to the lower constraint and tries to bring as
little air as possible.
The values for the performance index were given in Table 4-5. The graphic that
shows the plot of those values is given in Figure 4-1.
Performance Index vs OA
0 10 20 30 40 50 60 70 80 90 100 110 120 130 140 150 160
OA Amount (cfmlperson)
Figure 4-1. The performance index and its correlation with the supplied OA amount.
Although performance index is the value that is defined in Wargocki's (2000)
study, this dissertation subtracts 1 (one) from these values so when they are multiplied
with the total salary of the occupants of the building, only the profit can be calculated. A
more detailed description of this calculation will be explained in the "User Defined
Independent Variables as Input Data" subsection. The final numbers in the productivity
curve after subtracting 1 from the performance index are illustrated in Figure 4-2. This
new value in this research will be referred to as "Performance Profit Index" (PPI).
Since this research is assuming linearity in the functions used in the model, the
productivity function is linearized by slightly underestimating the PPI values. Many
studies that choose to linearize a nonlinear function chooses one of the two options:
* Piece-wise linearization by overestimating
* Piece-wise linearization by underestimating
PPI vs OA
0 20 40 60 80 100 120 140 160
Am ount of OA (cfmlpe rson)
Figure 4-2. PPI and its correlation with the amount of OA.
Piece-wise linearization is used in many studies by choosing either to overestimate
or underestimate. Examples of piece-wise linearization of an exponential function are
given in Figure 4-3. The model developed in this research however would only be sound
if at least a number of segments are created. Otherwise the model as the total amount of
OA brought into the building would still create solutions at the extreme OA values. If the
PPI versus OA function was to be linearized at point r in only two lines this would only
limit the OA solutions to either 20, r or 140. However linearizing this function to at
least "n" number of lines would require the user to include additional constraints. In order
to simplify the configuration of the model, the PPI versus OA function is linearized with
11 lines at points, 20, 26, 32, 38, 44, 50, 56, 62, 68, 74, 80, and 86 (cfm). These functions
and their integration in the optimization model will be discussed in the "Defining the
Optimization Model" section. The piece-wise linearization of the PPI vs. OA function is
given in Figure 4-4.
A, E D A ^ o B
Figure 4-3. An example for piecewise linear overestimate and underestimate of an
exponential function. A) Overestimating, B) Underestimating (Irion et al.
0 035 g
0 20 40 60 80 100 120 140 160
Am ount of OA (cfmlpe rs on)
Figure 4-4. Piece-wise linearization of the PPI vs. OA function.
In order to calculate the equation of the lines presented in Figure 4-4, the values
obtained from Figure 4-4 or Table 4-5 can be inserted in Equation 4-5. The value of the
PPI vs OA
slope (m) can be calculated by finding the tangent of the B : angle for each linear segment
by using Equation 4-6.
y = mx + c (4-5)
m = The slope of the line
c = The constant.
S(Maxe PPI Min PPI)
Tan(0)= = m. (4-6)
(Max OA Min OA)
This research disregards the correlation between the amount of air cleaned with the
productivity levels and PPI. If any scientific data are developed in the future, a new linear
function can be calculated by using similar methods shown for OA vs. PPI calculations.
Defining the Optimization Model
The optimization study includes three maj or parts as listed below:
* Improved ventilation by central unit
* Improved ventilation by a dedicated unit
* Air cleaning
These areas are all combined in an obj ective function in order to set the values for
the decision variables that are subj ect to the constraints. An important factor to note is
that using the preliminary methodology developed by EPA that is introduced earlier can
help estimate the rough values for the input unit costs. However it is also important to
evaluate the model not in terms of the actual numbers that will be constantly changing
due to inflation rates and other economic and technological developments, but of the
relationships among the IAQ control options. The model is developed as a preliminary
model that is basically simplified in many terms to clarify the application of linear
programming methodologies in construction management. Although more complex
optimization methodologies are widely used in the engineering side of this area,
construction managers and the building owners and managers are still not aware of the
possibilities that optimization studies can offer in making preliminary decisions.
Decision variables are the dependent variables in LP that are subj ect to changing
while optimizing the obj ective function. There are a total of eleven decision variables in
this research. The units of all the variables except the binary ones and the productivity
variable are cubic feet per minute per person and all the cost values in the model are
annual. Decision variables of the model in this research are listed below:
X, = Amount of OA supplied by a central unit (cfm/person)
X2= Amount of OA supplied by a dedicated unit (cfm/person)
W= Profit generated by increased productivity ($)
F,= Amount of air through cleaner 1 (cfm/person)
F2= Amount of air through cleaner 2 (cfm/person)
F3= Amount of air through cleaner 3 (cfm/person)
Y,= "1" if central unit is used, "O" if not
Y2 "1" if dedicated unit is used, "O" if not
B, = "1" if cleaner 1 is used, "O" if not
B2 -- "1" if cleaner 2 is used, "O" if not
B3 -- "1" if cleaner 3 is used, "O" if not
The details explanations of the above decision variables are given below:
a) (X, ) Amount of OA supplied by a central unit
This variable represents the amount of outdoor air that is being supplied to the
building by a central HVAC unit in efm/person units. ASHRAE 62. 1-2001 standards
mandate the total amount of OA supplied in commercial buildings as 20 ofm per person.
However the model investigates in more depth to explore if bringing more OA would still
be economically feasible.
b) (X, ) Amount of OA supplied by a dedicated unit
The difference of the OA by the dedicated unit from the central unit appears only
when dealing with fixed installed costs. The operating and maintenance costs associated
with this variable are supposed to be exactly the same as the OA by the central unit. Thus
the model will choose to bring OA into the building by either a dedicated or central unit
depending on their fixed installed costs.
c) (Fi ) Amount of air through cleaner "i" (for i=1.2,3)
This is the amount of air that passes through the air cleaners that are located
possibly in three different locations. These locations are illustrated in Figure 4-5. The
relations among these different locations will be discussed under the constraints section.
According to Figure 4-5, if a cleaner is located on location then it will only clean the
outdoor air supplied to the system. If it is located in Location 2 then it will only clean the
recirculating air. If it is located on Location 3 then it will be able to filter both
recirculating air and the outdoor air.
Figure 4-5. Possible air cleaner locations.
d) ( Y,) Binary variable for central air unit
This variable is the binary variable for the central unit. It gives the model the option
of either using this unit or not. If the model finds it optimum to use the central air unit,
the value of this decision variable appears in the solution as "1" and "O" if not used.
e) (Y2) Binary variable for dedicated unit
This variable is the binary variable for the dedicated unit. It gives the model the
option of either using this unit or not. If the model finds it optimum to use the dedicated
air unit the value of this decision variable appears in the solution as "1" and "O" if not
f) (B ) Binary variable for air cleaners (for i=1,2,3)
This variable is the binary variable for each of the air cleaners. B, represents the
binary for location 1, B, is the binary variable for location 2, and B, is the binary variable
for air cleaner in location 3 (See Figure 4-3). Depending on these variables being "1" or
"O" the user can decide which one(s) should be used or not.
The obj ective function of the model is given in Equation 4-7. The obj ective of the
model in managerial terms is to minimize the true costs of indoor air quality management
options. In more detail, it is to minimize the overall cost of providing outdoor air and
cleaning air in a commercial building while maximizing the benefits of increased worker
productivity. Equation 4-7 represents the summation of three maj or costs. These are the
cost of OA by a central unit, OA by a dedicated unit, and cleaning air in three possible
locations. The cost of bringing OA by a central unit includes the variable cost (VC),
revenue generated by increased productivity (R), and the fixed costs (FC).
Minz= ~(AiX, +C,Y,)+ (FD)+BE)- (4-7)
VC, FC, VC, FC, R
z = The total annual cost of the IAQ control ($)
A, = Marginal cost of air by central unit ($ x person/cfm)
A, = Marginal cost of air by dedicated unit ($ x person/cfm)
C, = Fixed cost for central unit ($)
C, = Fixed cost for dedicated unit ($)
D = Cost for cleaning air ($ x person/cfm)
E = Fixed cost for air cleaners ($)
4= Money saved by incre~ased productivity by central unit (See~ Eq. 4T-7) ($)
P,= Money saved by increased productivity by dedicated unit (See Eq. 4-7) ($)
P,= Money saved by increased productivity by air cleaners (See Eq. 4-7) ($)
X, = Amount of OA supplied by a central unit (cfm/person)
X, = Amount of OA supplied by a dedicated unit (cfm/person)
F,= Amount of air through cleaner 1 (cfm/person)
F,= Amount of air through cleaner 2 (cfm/person)
F,= Amount of air through cleaner 3 (cfm/person)
Y,= "1" if central unit is used, "O" if not
Y,= "1" if dedicated unit is used, "O" if not
B, = "1" if cleaner 1 is used, "O" if not.
B, = "1" if cleaner 2 is used, "O" if not.
B, = "1" if cleaner 3 is used, "O" if not.
W = Profit generated by increased productivity by using PPI function. ($)
Although the data stating the dependency among the variables X X,, and F, are
not clearly set with the current literature and studies, there is a strong belief that in fact
there should be a relationship (Wargocki 2000). If data become available then this
dependency can be reflected in the model by including a function of X, and F, in the
calculation of W. This may create a more accurate and actual representation of the IAQ
measures and productivity. However the new obj ective function in that case would
become a nonlinear function, which would require a more complex solution to the model.
Thus solving the model with MS. Excel Solver 9 would not be possible anymore. On the
other hand there are other software and tools available for this type of optimization such
as Lingo 9. Once the data and verification are available one should consider using these
software to complete the solution of the model.
Decision constraints of the model are a set of constraints that the model is limited
with while changing the value of the decision variables to optimize the obj ective
function. The decision constraints that the objective function (See Equation 4-7) is
subj ect to, are given below:
1. X, +X2 <140clinn
2. X, + X 2 >20 c/i~n
3. Y, + Y 2
4. B, + B2 + B3
5. X, -140Y, <0
6. X2 -140Y2 <0
7. ( -140B, <0
8. F, + F2 F3 < 0
9. X, + X2 (F, + F2 + F3) < 0
10. 1 83 1.02 X1 1 83 1.02 X2 + W <= -3 6620.41
11. 851.38 X1 851.38 X2 + W <= -11149.65
12. 560.79 X1 560.79 X2 + W <= -1850.81
13. 418.36 XI 418.36 X2 + W <= 3542.52
14. 334.45 X1 334.45 X2 + W <= 7256.39
15. 278.42 X1 278.42 X2 + W <= 10057.78
16. 23 8.50 X1 23 8.50 X2 + W <= 12293.41
17. 208.61 X1 208.61 X2 + W <= 14146.98
18. 185.38 Xi 185.38 X2 + W <= 15726.56
19. 166.81 XI 166.81 X2 + W <= 17100.76
20. 151.62 Xi 151.62 X2 + W <= 18315.65
21. All variables 2 0
Constraint 1. This constraint mandates that the amount of OA taken into the
building does not go over 140 ofm of OA since this would require a replacement or
upgrade of the equipment.
Constraint 2. This constraint mandates that the total amount of OA supplied by
both units should be at least 20 ofm per person, which is the requirement of ASHRAE
Standard 62. 1-1999 for commercial buildings.
Constraint 3. This binary constraint requires the model to select at least one of the
HVAC units (dedicated or central).
Constraint 4. This binary constraint requires the model that at least one of the air
cleaners at one of the possible locations shall be selected. If the user decides that only one
of the cleaners should be selected then the > should be replaced with "="
Constraint 5. This constraint is similar to the Big M method. It makes sure that if
the model decides not to use the central unit, Y, will be zero (0), thus the model will
automatically give X, the value of zero (0) so it will not be included in the obj ective
function cost calculations.