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The development of instrumentation for the measurement of relative humidity within building microenvironments

Baker, P.H. and Galbraith, G.H. and Sanders, C.H. and McLean, R.C. (2006) The development of instrumentation for the measurement of relative humidity within building microenvironments. Measurement, 39 (6). pp. 565-574. ISSN 0263-2241

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Epidemiological evidence suggests that the presence of biocontaminants within buildings, such as dust mites and microfungi, can have a detrimental effect on the well-being of occupants. As a result, considerable attention has been focussed over the past few years on the measurement of the environmental conditions within biocontaminant microenvironments, which may have a spatial scale of only a few millimeters. Until recently, the major restriction in this regard was the lack of a humidity sensor with the necessary spatial resolution. The recent availability of microchip-based sensors has removed this restriction. This paper reports on the development of a humidity measurement system for microenvironment investigations. It also describes the validation of the system through a series of laboratory experiments and the novel application of a dynamic heat and mass simulation model as a suitable means of interpreting measured data.