Air Quality

Thanks to cutting-edge technologies, Laser Lab is a reliable partner for performing the control of the main atmospheric pollutants in order to ensure both compliance with the objectives set by Italian and European legislation and to respond to the request for citizens' well-being and environmental protection.

Within this sector, we monitor air pollution, odorigenic substances and asbestos with mobile laboratories and control units.

Our services are mainly aimed at managers of industrial plants, waste management plants (landfills, incinerators, waste-to-energy plants, etc.) and to local administrators and private citizens seeking answers on air quality control.

Air quality monitoring

The air pollution monitoring activity is carried out with mobile laboratories and control units that can be installed near the critical areas to be checked.

The main area of application is the monitoring during the construction of major works, public works, the environmental impacts during the construction phases in the industrial sector.

LabAnalysis Group has several mobile vehicles equipped to carry out the micro-pollutants and macro-pollutants required in the monitoring plans: total dust, PM10, PM2.5, nitrogen oxides, sulfur dioxide, carbon monoxide, ozone, hydrocarbons, volatile organic compounds, compounds sulfurates and mercaptans, polycyclic aromatic hydrocarbons, dioxins and furans, ammonia, asbestos, odor and related odorigenic substances.

Monitoring of odor and odorigenic substances

Laser Lab performs activity of odor measurement and characterization of odorigenic substances by combining dynamic olfactometry, through a panel of inspectors, with the use of highly specialized analysis that involve the use of highly sensitive equipement.

The odor measurement is carried out according to the UNI EN 13725 standard which provides the determination of the odor concentration of a gaseous sample using dynamic olfactometry with a panel of inspectors; the method is applicable to odor emissions from chimneys or from area sources such as biofilters, purification tanks or heaps.

The chemical characterization of the odorous substances is carried out by sampling the air with specific supports (canisters and vials). The analysis uses gas chromatography systems with mass spectrometry combined with thermal desorption as required by the EPA TO-15 and EPA TO-17 standards. The versatility of canister sampling allows the monitoring span to be varied from 30 minutes to 48 hours.

Foresight studies and models of dispersion of odorigenic substances and pollutants in the air

The impact of pollutant/ odor emissions into the atmosphere is determined with the atmospheric dispersion model, which calculates the concentration of pollutants on the ground, processing emission data, meteorological data and soil profile data.

To calculate the dispersion of pollutants and odors emitted into the atmosphere we use the CALPUFF model. It has been created by Earth Tech Inc. on behalf of the California Air Resources Board (CARB) and the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency (US EPA).

CALPUFF is a multi-layered, multi-species and non-stationary Gaussian puff dispersion model; it can simulate the effects deriving from meteorological conditions varying in time and space on the transport, transformation and removal of all inert or weakly reactive pollutants, evaluating the concentration levels and deposition flows of the pollutants themselves and, finally, can treat emissions odorous.

CALPUFF is one of the models officially mentioned by US EPA for air quality estimation and it’s included in the list of models recommended by APAT (Italian Agency for Environmental Protection and Technical Services) for evaluation and management air quality.

Monitoring asbestos and synthetic glass fibers (FAV)

Laser Lab offers a service for the research of asbestos and similar fibers according to the DM 6-9-94 G.U. 220 of 20-9-94.

Checks are carried out on the roofs state of conservation and artefacts containing asbestos (MCA) for the purpose of assessing the asbestos risk by determining:

  • the type and quantity of asbestos present in massive samples with diffractometric scanning (Annex 1 met.A DM 6- 9-94 GU220 of 20-9-94)
  • the evaluation of surface degradation on asbestos-cement products using a practical tear-off method (UNI 10608: 1997)
  • the development of suitable algorithms for assessing the risk of exposure to asbestos in specific environments (eg VERSAR index, Lombardy region algorithm, etc.)

Furthermore, for risk assessment, the concentration of asbestos fibers and similar airborne fibers, in work environments or in areas subject to remediation, both indoor and outdoor, is checked, with an optical microscopy (MOCF) according to WHO ISBN 92 4 154496 1 1997 and scanning electron microscopy (SEM) according to Annex 2 met.B DM 6-9-94 GU220 of 20-9-94.

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