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Controlling house-dust mites through ventilation: the development of a model of mite response to varying hygrothermal conditions

Crowther, D; Oreszczyn, T; Pretlove, SEC; Ridley, I; Horwood, J; Cox, P; Leung, B; (2001) Controlling house-dust mites through ventilation: the development of a model of mite response to varying hygrothermal conditions. In: (Proceedings) Indoor Air Biocontaminants: Health Effects, Prevention 2001. (pp. pp. 183-192). : Dijon, France. Green open access

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Abstract

There is clear evidence that house dust mite populations in many climatic regions can potentially be controlledby modifying temperature and humidity within dwellings. This paper describes a current multi-disciplinary UKfunded research project to develop a predictive model of house dust mite response to varying hygrothermalconditions. The project involves the development of two component models, the first simulating transienthygrothermal conditions in bedding and the second simulating the effect of these conditions on mite populations.The bed model is being developed by adapting existing hygrothermal modelling techniques, starting with amodel of conditions within the dwelling and extending it to include the bed environment. It is being tested andvalidated by comparing predictions with temperatures and humidities measured in a fully instrumented bed in atest laboratory, as well as in normally occupied beds in dwellings. The development of the mite populationmodel is hampered by a lack of available physiological data in certain key areas. Nevertheless the framework fora prototype model has been established, supported by experimental mite studies being carried out in thelaboratory. In order to test its output, a series of population growth experiments will be carried out in a computercontrolled incubator chamber, where temperature and humidity can be varied to replicate conditions in bedding.Mite samples from field study beds are also being monitored. The aim of the project is to integrate the bed andpopulation models so that one can investigate the impact on mite populations of modifying environmentconditions, for example by changes in building insulation, the heating/ventilation regime and occupantbehaviour. In this way the most effective and widely applicable measures for reducing mite populations can bedetermined for a variety of typical house types and climate zones. Similarly, it will enable the likely effect onmite populations of, for example, different climate change scenarios to be assessed. In addition to the completetransient model, a simpler version is being developed for potential use by practitioners, such as buildingdesigners, energy consultants, environmental health officials and policy makers.

Type: Proceedings paper
Title: Controlling house-dust mites through ventilation: the development of a model of mite response to varying hygrothermal conditions
Event: Indoor Air Biocontaminants: Health Effects, Prevention 2001
Open access status: An open access version is available from UCL Discovery
Additional information: Imported via OAI, 7:29:01 4th Jan 2007
Keywords: AIR, BED, effects, health, House dust mite, hygrothermal, INDOOR AIR, June, model, population, Prevention
UCL classification: UCL
UCL > Provost and Vice Provost Offices
UCL > Provost and Vice Provost Offices > UCL BEAMS
UCL > Provost and Vice Provost Offices > UCL BEAMS > Faculty of the Built Environment
UCL > Provost and Vice Provost Offices > UCL BEAMS > Faculty of the Built Environment > Bartlett School Env, Energy and Resources
URI: https://discovery.ucl.ac.uk/id/eprint/2453
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