The Importance of Ventilation in Schools

Ventilation in schools IAQVentilation is perhaps the single most important element of an HVAC system. It influences air quality and energy efficiency, and proper ventilation controls odors, dilutes gases (such as carbon dioxide), and inhibits the spread of respiratory diseases. Ventilation air is critical in educational facilities.

Building codes dictate the amount of outside air that must be supplied to various spaces in such facilities. In the ASHRAE Handbook – HVAC Applications, the American Society of Heating, Refrigerating, and Air-Conditioning Engineers recommends that design considerations for education facilities must take into account that today’s schools are used for functions year-round. Adult education, night classes, and community functions put ever-increasing demands on these facilities. ASHRAE Standard 62 gives recommended ventilation rates for various spaces within educational facilities.

The environmental control system must be designed carefully to meet these needs. Many schools use gymnasiums as auditoriums and community meeting rooms, resulting in wide variations in use and occupancy rates. Flexibility is important in these multi-use rooms.

Ventilation Requirements

The code requirements are varied, but the new International Building Code (IBC) has been adopted by 44 states and will be the code most used in the future. The IBC gives data to determine the minimum outdoor airflow rate based on occupancy of the space and the occupancy load.

The occupancy load used for the design of the ventilation system shall not be less than the number determined from the estimated maximum occupant load rate indicated in the table. The ventilation system shall be designed to supply the required rate of ventilation air continuously during the period the building is occupied.

The minimum flow rate of outdoor air that the ventilation system must be capable of supplying during the operation of the system is based upon the rate per person indicated in the table. The IBC also addresses the special needs of variable air volume (VAV) systems and requires controls to regulate the flow of outdoor air over the entire range of supply air operating rates.

Measuring Air Quality

Ruskin Air Measuring Equipment

Ruskin has the most comprehensive line of air measuring and control solutions in the industry.  Products include differential pressure probes for high velocity applications, combination units that measure and maintain flow, and highly sophisticated, intelligent solutions that incorporate thermal dispersion technology with microprocessor based controls that communicate with any building automation system.

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For more information about Ruskin’s complete product line, application and design support, and our state-of-the-art manufacturing capabilities, contact your local Ruskin representative nearest you or Contact Ruskin directly at (816) 761-7476.

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