ATLANTA, GA — Air Quality Sciences Inc. (AQS) recently unveiled a new technique for analyzing the volatile organic chemicals (VOCs) present in settled building dust. Known as DustVOC™, this new forensic technique can examine a building for past and present chemical contamination, according to AQS. The company also says that building investigators can use the DustVOC to diagnose the cause of sick building syndrome breakouts, and evaluate cleaning effectiveness following construction, maintenance, or remediation.

Recently, AQS used the DustVOC to evaluate the acceptability of several office buildings in New York City following the 9/11 attacks. Buildings within close proximity to the Twin Towers had windows blown out and interior surfaces were contaminated with dust and debris resulting from the collapse of the towers. According to AQS, although the buildings had been cleaned, building dust analysis showed elevated levels of chemicals that were two to three times higher than typical commercial building dust. AQS also says that many of the chemicals found were known irritants and carcinogens. AQS recommended that all contaminated materials be removed if more thorough cleaning does not take care of the problem.

For more information on the DustVOC, go to (website).

Publication date: 09/02/2002