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Air pollution has been a growing cause of concern over the past two decades. As pollution levels have risen, so have the demands of building occupants for "clean" interior air. In response to these demands, the traditional role of air conditioning systems, the control of interior air temperature and humidity, has progressively been expanded. Components such as air washers, electrostatic precipitators, high efficiency filters and activated carbon adsorbers have been added to remove particulate matter and odors from interior air.

In recognition of the problems that air pollutants may cause, the American Society of Heating, Refrigerating and Air Conditioning Engineers, Inc. (ASHRAE), through its Task Group on Air Pollution, sponsored a study to determine the extent to which air conditioning equipment could remove pollutants from conditioned air supplied to interior spaces. The study was to be based on existing information available from the literature, and from equipment manufacturers and research workers, and was conducted from July through December of 1969.

The principal objectives of the study were:

(1) To determine the information available concerning the ability of commercial air conditioning equipment to reduce concentrations of pollutants in the outdoor air drawn into a building;

(2) To determine the probable effects of various combinations of equipment and compare these predictions with measurements made in selected existing situations.

These objectives were accomplished largely by a comprehensive literature search, a survey of equipment manufacturers, and contacts with researchers in industry, government and universities. In addition, data available from an ongoing study with the National Air Pollution Control Administration was combined with theoretical techniques to assess the value of mathematical modelling in predicting indoor/ outdoor pollutant relationships.

Citation: ASHRAE Transactions, Volume 77, Part 1, Philadelphia, PA