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  • EUROPEAN CONCERTED ACTION

    DOOR AIR QUALITY & ITS IMPACT ON MAN COST Project 61 3

    t

    Environment and Quality of Life

    Report No. 8

    e for the Characterization of Volatile Organic Compo nds Emitted

    door Materials and Products Using Small Test Chambers

    1 prepared by Working Group 8

    Angelo COLOMBO, CEC, Joint Research Centre, Environment Institute, lspra (Italy) Derrick CRUMP, The Building Research Station, Watford (United Kingdom)

    . Maurizio DE BORTOLI, (chairman), CEC, JRC, Environment Institute, lspra (Italy) Robert GEHRIG, Eidg. Materialprufungs- und Forschungsanstalt, Dubendorf (Switzerland) Hans GUSTAFSSON, Swedish National Testing and Research Institute, Boras (Sweden) Peter A. NIELSEN, SBI-Danish Building Research Institute, Hmrsholm (Denmark) Kristina SAARELA, Technical Research Centre of Finland, Espoo (Finland)

    . Hew6 SAGEOT, Centre Technique du Bois et de I'Ameublement, Paris (France) Nelly TSALKANI, Athens (Greece) Detlef ULLRICH, lnstitut filr Wasser-, Boden- und Lufthygiene, Berlin (Germany) Jan VAN DER WAL, TNO Building Research, Delft (The Netherlands)

    reviewed by the Community-COST Concertation Committee

    This report is the product of Working Group 8 of the EC Concerted Action "Indoor Air Quality and Its Impact on Man". The basis for the work of the group has been the report EPA-60018-89-074 "Indoor air sources: using small environmental test chambers to characterize organic emissions from indoor materials and products", prepared by Bruce A. TICHENOR, His work, gratefully acknowledged here, is by far the largest contribution to the present report.

    * * *, Commission of the European Communities Directorate General for Science, Research and Development

    + , * Joint Research Centre - Environmeni Institute

    EUR 13593 EN 1991

  • Published by the COMMISSION OF THE EUROPEAN COMMUNITIES Directorate-General Information Market and Innovation Batiment Jean Monnet LUXEMBOURG

    LEGAL NOTICE

    Neither the Commission of the European Communities nor any person acting on behalf of the Commission is responsible for the use which might be made of the following information.

    Cataloguing data can be found at the end of this publication.

    In this series the following reports have already been published. - Report No. 1 : Radon in indoor air. P Report No. 2: Formaldehyde emissions from wood based materials: guideline

    for the establishment of steady state concentrations in test chambers. Report No. 3: Indoor Pollution by NO, in European countries. Report No. 4: Sick building syndrome - a pratical guide. - Report No. 5: Project inventory. Report No. 6: Strategy for sampling chemical substances in indoor air. - Report No. 7: Indoor air pollution by formaldehyde in European Countries.

    Luxembourg: Office for Publications of the European Communities, 1991

    O ECSC - EEC - EAEC, Brussels - Luxembourg, 1991

    Printed in Italy

  • CONTENTS

    Introduction .......................................................................................................................... A . Scope .................................... .. ....................................................................................... B . Testing objectives ........................................................................................................... C . Mass transfer considerations ................... .... ............................................................. D . Use of the results ................... .............. .............................................................................

    .................................................................................................... Facilities and equipment A. Environmental test chambers ....................... .... .........................................................

    ........................................................... B . Environmental measurement and control . .....i

    ......................................................................................... Sample collection and analysis .................................................................... A . Sampling devices ................... ... ............... ...

    B . Sample collection media ..................................... .. ........................................................ ............................................................. C . Organic compound analysis instrumentation

    D . Standards generation and system calibration ............................................................

    Experimental design ............................................................................................................ A . Definition of test objective@) ......................................................................................... B . Experimental parameters ........................ ., .......... ,.. ....................................................... C . Product history .......................... ,... ............................................................................... D . Test matrix ..................................... ... ................................................................................ E . Recommended test conditions .....................................................................................

    ................................................................................................... Experimental procedures A . Composition of emissions ............................................................................................... B . Screening bulk products by headspace analysis/microchamber ............................ C . Chamber testing ............................................................................................................. D . Sampling ........................ ............. ..................................................................................

    ........................................................................................................................ Data analysis A . Environmental data ........................................................................................................ B . Gas chromatography data ........................... .. .......................................................... C . Emission description ....................... .... ........................................................................

    ..................................................................................... Quality assurance/quality control

    Reporting test results ............................................................................................................

    References ...........................................................................................................................

    Membres of the Community-Cost Concertation Commiffee ........................................

    ............................................................................................ .................................... Figures .. Appendix 1 .......................................................................................................................... Appendix 2 ............................ ............ ................................................................. Appendix 3 ...................... ... .............................................................................................

  • SECTION 1

    INTRODUCTION

    A. SCOPE

    The purpose of this report is to describe the methods and procedures for determining emission rates of volatile organic compounds (VOC) from indoor materials I products using small environmental test chambers. The techniques described are useful for both routine product testing by manufacturers and testing laboratories and for more rigorous evaluation by Indoor Air Quality (IAQ) researchers.

    The importance for human health of VOC in indoor environments is explained in a report by WHO (WHO 1989), where also a definition of VOC, based on volatility, is given.

    The report does not provide specific guidance for determining emissions of formaldehyde from pressed wood products, since this has been the subject of a specific guideline (COST Project 613,1989). It is possible, however, that the guide could be used to support alternative testing rrlethods.

    While the ultimate purpose of any evaluation of indoor materials is to determine whether the emissions can contribute to health or comfort problems, this report is applicable only to the determination of the emissions themselves. The effect of the emissions (e-g., toxicity) i s beyond the scope of the report.

    Small environmental test chambers (see Section 2A for volume range) are the preferred tool for the qualitative and quantitative characterization of the vapours and gases emitted from various materials and products. They have the advantage of being limited in size, cheaper and easier to operate than large chambers. However they are inappropriate for testing combustion devices or large items (e.9. furniture) which require large chambers; also they could be regarded as too large and costly, in cases where microchambers (see Section 5C) are sufficient. The purpose of this report is to provide assistance by describing equipment and techniques suitable for determining organic emissions from indoor materials. Specific examples are provided to illustrate existing approaches; these examples are not intended to inhibit alternative approaches or techniques.

    A valida

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