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Air Quality Monitoring Air Pollution Levels As You Go

Published on December 24th, 2012 | by Joshua S Hill

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Monitoring Air Quality From Your Smart Phone

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December 24th, 2012 by  

 
Those suffering from respiratory problems derived from pollution in the air may soon have the chance to view real-time data regarding the conditions in their own neighborhood, thanks to computer scientists from the University of California San Diego.

The researchers have built a small fleet of portable pollution sensors that they sent out into the area during a field test — the sensors allow users to monitor air quality in real-time and view the results on their smart phone.

Monitoring Air Pollution Levels As You Go

“We want to get more data and better data, which we can provide to the public,” said William Griswold, a computer science professor at the Jacobs School of Engineering at UC San Diego and the lead investigator on the project. “We are making the invisible visible.”

The information is linked to a users’ smartphones, as well as those without sensors, by way of the application.

Furthermore, deploying 100 sensors into a region could generate a really useful dataset beyond that which is currently provided by EPA-mandated air-quality monitoring stations. For example, San Diego County has a population of 3.1 million residents over approximately 4,000 square miles and only 10 air-monitoring stations.

The CitiSense sensors detect levels of ozone, nitrogen, and carbon monoxide, the three most common pollutants expelled by cars and trucks that are damaging to the human respiratory system. The smartphone application subsequently reveals the data by way of a colour-coded scale for air quality based on the EPA’s air quality ratings ranging from green for good through to purple for hazardous.

Source: University of California San Diego

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About the Author

I'm a Christian, a nerd, a geek, a liberal left-winger, and believe that we're pretty quickly directing planet-Earth into hell in a handbasket! I also write for Fantasy Book Review (.co.uk), and can be found writing articles for a variety of other sites. Check me out at about.me for more.



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  • http://twitter.com/JBSCanada John Brian Shannon

    “Forexample, San Diego County has a population of 3.1 residents over
    approximately 4,000 square miles and only 10 air-monitoring stations.”

    Possibly 3.1 million residents? ;-)

    Cheers, JBS
    http://jbsnews.com

    • http://zacharyshahan.com/ Zachary Shahan

      nope, 3.1 exactly… not sure one 0.1 resident is, but this number is correct. :D

      in all seriousness, thanks — updated.

  • http://MrEnergyCzar.com/ MrEnergyCzar

    I’m sure these would be banned in China…..great article.

    MrEnergyCzar

    • http://zacharyshahan.com/ Zachary Shahan

      ha, possibly. :P

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