The rapidly expanding assortment of air quality sensors in recent years includes several low-cost and easily deployable air quality monitors. These are readily available to individuals and communities and are being used by many citizens who want to investigate air quality in their neighborhoods and communities. Although these sensors are not up to the standard of EPA Federal Reference Method or Federal Equivalence Method monitors, they are providing rapid air quality information that can play a role in understanding and avoiding high pollution periods which is beneficial to reducing public exposure and protecting health. These new monitoring tools are also helping assist air quality managers with implementing the nation’s air quality standards.

The role of these sensors in the wildland fire world remains to be seen, however they are receiving increasing attention. Some comprehensive information sources on these includes:

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Webinar 3/8/18 - The Current Landscape of Air Quality Sensors - Networks, Performance, and Communication Strategies (Kristen Benedict (EPA/OAQPS) & Ronald Williams (EPA/ORD)

This presentation provides an overview of the landscape of air sensor projects. Topics covered will include the number and types of project happening domestically and across the world, performance of low cost devices and parameters to consider when choosing a device, applications for sensor data, and the communication of real-time information to the public.

EPA monitoring webpage

EPA Air Sensor Toolbox

This website provides information for citizen scientists and others on how to select and use low-cost, portable air sensor technology and understand results from monitoring activities. The information can help the public learn more about air quality in their communities.

 

Presentations from the 'Deliberating Performance Targets for Air Quality Sensors' Workshop

On June 25-27, 2018, in Research Triangle Park, NC, EPA held a workshop and webinar to solicit individual stakeholder views related to non-regulatory performance targets for sensors that measure fine particulate matter (PM2.5) and ozone in the United States. Through on-site and webinar presentations, national and international participants addressed a range of technical issues involved in establishing performance targets for air sensor technologies.