Paper Conference

Proceedings of BSA Conference 2022: Fifth Conference of IBPSA-Italy


The Role of Ventilation in Indoor Spaces During the Covid-19 Pandemic: Comprehensive Analysis of ASHRAE Standard 62.1

Giovanni Francesco Giuzio, Giovanni Barone, Annamaria Buonomano, Gianluca Del Papa, Cesare Forzano, Adolfo Palombo, Giuseppe Russo

Abstract: The spread of COVID-19 has significantly increased attention focused on the air quality of indoor environments. All major international health organizations (e.g., World Health Organization, etc.) recognize the importance of ventilation in enclosed spaces in reducing pathogen concentrations and fighting the Corona virus, or future pandemics. In this context, the roadmap to ensure safer and healthier indoor environments, by also guaranteeing an adequate comfort level, involves the implementation of several measures leading to a not-negligible increase in buildings' energy consumption. Within this framework, the present paper aims to analyze the adequacy of the current Indoor Air Quality (IAQ) standards requirements, and to assess the impact of IAQ improving measures on end-use energy profiles to ensure occupants' comfort. Specifically, a dynamic simulation approach is adopted to estimate, for each building space typology defined by ASHRAE 62.1, both air contaminant concentration and zone energy consumption. Specifically, the risk to occupants of contracting the COVID-19 virus was assessed for different scenarios using a modified Wells-Riley model. The study confirms the urgent need for enhancing ventilation in enclosed spaces to exit the health emergency caused by COVID-19. In addition, the paper provides quantitative data on the resulting operating costs of HVAC systems.
Pages: 437 - 447