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What You Can't See Can Hurt You


In-home air quality readings.

Researchers at the University of Utah say homeowners will strive to improve the air quality of their homes when presented with visualizations of how that changes over time.

Credit: Jason Wiese

University of Utah researchers have found homeowners will significantly alter their behavior to improve the air quality in their homes if presented with visualizations of how it changes.

The team built portable air quality monitors with Wi-Fi—called MAAV (MeasureAir quality, Annotate data streams, and Visualize real-time PM2.5 levels)—and connected them to a university server.

Three sensors were placed in six Utah homes for four to 11 months in 2017 and 2018. Every minute, each sensor automatically measured the air for tiny particles or droplets 2.5 microns or less in width, and sent its findings to the server so homeowners could view the data on a tablet that displayed the air pollution measurements in each room as a line graph over a 24-hour period.

The research was presented this week at the ACM International Joint Conference on Pervasive and Ubiquitous Computing (Ubicomp 2018) in Singapore.

From Unews, University of Utah
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