November 14, 2018

9:00 pm / 10:00 pm

UCLA Center for Health Sciences, CHS 43-105

How Low-Cost Air Quality Sensors Can Be Used to Target VOCs and Support Public Health Research

Ashley Collier-Oxandale, Ph.D.
Air Quality Specialist, South Coast Air Quality Management District

About the lecture: Low-cost sensors have the potential to enhance the quantity and type of air quality data available to public health researchers by making it easier to collect higher temporal and spatial resolution data. This could in turn provide greater insight into pollutant variability and exposure. One area of particular interest is that of using low-cost sensors for the detection of VOCs. This capability could facilitate more accessible real-time monitoring of toxics; it could also offer insight into sources by providing more information on co-emitted pollutants. While there is great potential for VOC sensors, there are also many challenges associated with sensor use and few studies exploring this potential in the field. This talk will give an overview of some of the work that has been done to examine the use of VOC sensors to detect methane and non-methane VOCs; including sensor performance and the challenges/limitations. It will also include observations of what may be learned from this type of data, illustrating how this technology may be valuable to the field of public health. The speaker will also discuss some of the projects involving low-cost sensors currently being undertaken by the South Coast Air Quality Management District.

About the speaker: Dr. Collier-Oxandale recently completed her PhD at the University of Colorado Boulder in Environmental Engineering and now works as an Air Quality Specialist in the AQ-SPEC group at the South Coast Air Quality Management District.

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