As we start into 2022 with the COVID-19 pandemic still top of the news and Omicron spreading quicker than any of its older variants. However, our children are returning to school. Therefore, the rising issue to improve classroom ventilation and air purification are more important than ever. The Public Health advice from the Health Protection Surveillance Centre (HPSC) is as follow – “where the practical measures of good ventilation practices have been undertaken, and poor ventilation continues to exist in a particular room/area, air cleaners are an additional measure in conjunction with other methods of ventilation that are available”. Therefore, the government is promoting the use of Air Purifiers that use HEPA filters to filter out the air in classrooms.
The building services industry has the answers and solutions to make our classrooms safer for children and teachers alike. This is in order to reduce the risk of viral spread & improve our education system. Therefore, we must ensure that they are both comfortable from a temperature perspective and sufficiently ventilated for cognitive function and reduction of the risk associated with the current COVID-19 situation. These are not mutually exclusive and can impact each other. For example, a naturally ventilated classroom with excellent cross ventilation via open windows and doors can offer a supremely low CO2 concentration but at this time of year could simultaneously be impossible to heat. We need to offer solutions that address this imbalance.
Importance of HEPA Filters
HEPA stands for high-efficiency particulate air and it is an efficiency standard for air filters. HEPA filters trap 99.97% of particles that are 0.3 microns in size i.e millionths of a meter or larger in size.
Our solution comes with an H14 filter as standard which has an efficiency of 99.995%. The Department is only recommending HEPA filters of Grade H13A and H14. H10 to H12 does not offer sufficient cleaning efficiency and can be as low as 85%.
Before buying any of these so-called “HEPA-type” filters that are available throughout Ireland, you need to make sure that you only consider an air-cleaning unit that says it uses HEPA filters or “True” HEPA filters.
Beyond the pandemic, the solutions we can provide will have long-lasting positive effects and will go on for years providing better learning environments and reduced school absenteeism. Therefore, we need to implement measures today to make a good building design that is not simply a reaction to COVID-19. Furthermore, there is a rise in the era of sustainability and the environmental need to reduce our carbon footprint. Therefore, it is very important that the ventilation systems we offer have a positive impact on reducing the building’s energy demands. Thus, making sure that we make a cleaner & greener learning environment for generations to come.
The Department of Education has given the following guidance for Air Cleaning in schools.
This guide shows us a reference to best international practice based on expert studies focusing particularly on ventilation strategy for classrooms. Therefore, the design flow chart from this guidance summarises the action plan, that we need to follow, to convert our schools into a healthier learning environment.
Aer Glan (HEPA Air Purifier) – The one solution for all HPSC requirements
Simple & Efficient
The air purifier creates air circulation inside the room. This will suck the contaminated air from the bottom. Thus, blowing clean air through the top of the unit.
A pre-filter & a HEPA filter will guarantee air purification for most fines particles.
Certified EN 1822, the H14 class HEPA filter ensures a maximized airflow and a very low initial pressure drop. This highly secure product is certified for microbial development.
- Plug&Play air purifier
- Two-stage filter system
- Filter 99,995% efficiency
- Low power consumption
- Easy to install
- Ideal for large room
- Very quiet design with integrated 6 noise attenuators
- Nice design
- Available in two sizes
- Constant airflow regulation
At Versatile, we are already working on a number of school ventilation projects with the Department of Education. In order to achieve this, we are expanding our suite of product solutions with our partner factories in Europe. The objective is to tick all of the boxes of ventilation and air purification systems. Thus, bringing a solution for every school and classroom in the country. Unfortunately, it’s not a one size fits all scenario, so it’s vital that our portfolio can deal with all possibilities.
We’d be delighted to set up an online call for your practice to discuss this extremely important topic & share our experiences to date. Contact us today to further discuss solutions for new and existing schools. Discover how these solutions will work for your projects and clients.