Allergen-free Indoor Environments Through Innovative Ventilation Strategies
A project initiated by Karolinska Institutet intended to test how airborne allergen from furred animals can be minimized in indoor environments. Results from experimental environment are applied in KTH Live In Lab where pets are introduced into the testbed.
Furred animals are an important allergenic source in the indoor environment. In Sweden, about 15% are allergic to furred animals. Many pets stay most of their time indoors and follow their owners in the environments where they live. Fur allergy, i.e. the particulate and airborne substances from animal fur that cause allergy, are spread both inside and outside the home and are found everywhere in society. It is therefore very difficult for people suffering from allergy to avoid exposure. Additionally, furred animals can also be found in households with allergies, as many people find it difficult to refrain from pets despite allergies.
The aim of the project is to design smart systems for measurement, control systems and ventilation / air purification with the aim of reducing the amount of allergen indoors. The vision is to develop ventilation solutions that can be applied in residential and community planning to minimize the problems for people with fur allergy. This is done by reducing as much as possible the amount of fur allergens in residential and general indoor environments.
In 2018, a preparatory project will be conducted to test measurement methods, perform modeling analyzes and investigate feasibility. Measurement methods and simulation techniques shall be designed to detect and map the airborne fur allergens. The methods are developed in experimental environment with controlled allergy supply and then applied to the KTH Live-In Lab where students with and without fur animals are invited to move in.