UBC Graduate Research

Evaluation of two building air cleaning systems at UBC Life Science Building based on environmental impact and cost analyses Hashemi, Seyedeh Zahra; Bao, Jie


To provide fresh and clean air to the Life Science Building at UBC, air filters have been installed in which air gets purified while passing through the filters, with the expenses of electrical energy driving the air fans. To maintain the constant temperature of the building air, cleaned air also passes through a heating coil to be heated or cooled. In the existing bulding air cleaning system, two kinds of filters were used. One is the pre-filter, and the other one is the box filter, which requires to be replaced every three months and every year, respectively. New filters from Nalco company have been considered as a replacement to the existing building air cleaning system. The new filters need to be replaced every 2 years. The previous filter system contains four hundred pre-filters, 24x24x2 Red Excel filters, and 400 box filters, 24x24x12 MVP. In the new system, 400 24x24x2 3M filters are replaced. Switching from the existing filter system to the new one is expected to reduce the costs, including the cost associated with the electrical energy required to force the air through the filters, waste disposal cost and the labor cost for the filter replacement. To quantify the advantage of the proposed new filter system over the existing system, we conducted an environmental impact assessment of the existing and proposed filter systems including pre-filters, box filters and the new filters (3M filters) in the Life science building of the University of British Columbia. Furthermore, a cost analysis was carried out to investigate whether it was economical to replace the existing filter system with the new filter system.

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