Estimating long-term time-resolved indoor PM2.5 of outdoor and indoor origin using easily obtainable inputs

Tongling Xia, Yue Qi, Xilei Dai, Jinyu Liu, Can Xiao, Ruoyu You, Dayi Lai, Junjie Liu, Chun Chen

Research output: Journal article publicationJournal articleAcademic researchpeer-review

4 Citations (Scopus)


To evaluate the separate impacts on human health and establish effective control strategies, it is crucial to estimate the contribution of outdoor infiltration and indoor emission to indoor PM2.5 in buildings. This study used an algorithm to automatically estimate the long-term time-resolved indoor PM2.5 of outdoor and indoor origin in real apartments with natural ventilation. The inputs for the algorithm were only the time-resolved indoor/outdoor PM2.5 concentrations and occupants’ window actions, which were easily obtained from the low-cost sensors. This study first applied the algorithm in an apartment in Tianjin, China. The indoor/outdoor contribution to the gross indoor exposure and time-resolved infiltration factor were automatically estimated using the algorithm. The influence of outdoor PM2.5 data source and algorithm parameters on the estimated results was analyzed. The algorithm was then applied in four other apartments located in Chongqing, Shenyang, Xi'an, and Urumqi to further demonstrate its feasibility. The results provided indirect evidence, such as the plausible explanations for seasonal and spatial variation, to partially support the success of the algorithm used in real apartments. Through the analysis, this study also identified several further development directions to facilitate the practical applications of the algorithm, such as robust long-term outdoor PM2.5 monitoring using low-cost light-scattering sensors.

Original languageEnglish
JournalIndoor Air
Publication statusAccepted/In press - 2021


  • I/O ratio
  • indoor emission
  • indoor PM exposure
  • natural ventilation
  • real building monitoring
  • year-round distribution

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Environmental Engineering
  • Building and Construction
  • Public Health, Environmental and Occupational Health


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