ISHRAE’s COVID-19 Task Force Launches recommendations to avoid the spread of viruses in residential, industrial and hospital buildings
The Indian Society of Heating, Refrigeration and Air Conditioning Engineers (ISHRAE) announced on Monday that it had set up a “COVID-19 Task Force” consisting of “Thinking Leaders & Experts” from among its members, to help establish guidance to support humanity in general and to support combat the pandemic in buildings and complexes, in particular. For more than a month now, the task force has carried out comprehensive studies and set out recommendations for the safe use of HVAC (heating, ventilation, and air conditioning) systems in residential buildings, industrial buildings and hospitals on 13 Apr 20. A copy of these guidelines is available for free download at www.ishrae.in.
These guidelines, in short, cover issues related to; all types of buildings, whether residential, commercial or health-care, and targets; from a basic, stand-alone air-conditioning system to more sophisticated, integrated and ducted air-conditioning systems and discuss related concerns, such as filtration, humidity, ventilation, etc.
The residential application includes the maintenance of a constant temperature and humidity level between 24 ° C and 30 ° C and 40% and 70% respectively. As it is more or less known that the COVID-19 virus can not withstand more than 37 ° C or more, ISHRAE maintains that room temperature and humidity levels should be closely controlled in order to make the virus ineffective.
In commercial buildings, multiple occupancy and transient visitors need to take precautions, particularly in the operation of their air conditioning systems. It would also be wise for all commercial buildings to reduce risk by ventilating the indoor atmosphere with fresh air as much as possible. Suggested prevention, as stated in the Guidelines, is the use of mechanical ventilation systems that increase the quality of outdoor air by filtration. Nevertheless, the document also set out separate operating guidelines focused on the type of indoor device that can be read here.
Eventually, in the healthcare sector, ISHRAE advises the conversion of general patient rooms and ICUs to COVID-19 patient areas with particular requirements relating to the HVAC systems in use. According to the guideline, it will first be appropriate to turn the rooms into a non-recirculatory method. Although this can be accomplished during an emergency by blocking the return air vents in the COVID-19 patient rooms. Nevertheless, it is necessary to ensure that the air handling unit is supplied with a sufficient supply of outdoor air.
Mr. Richie Mittal, President ISHRAE said, “As the world continues to fight this global pandemic of COVID-19, we at ISHRAE have launched a task force along with a collection of guidelines that can help the effects of the virus in our homes, workplaces, and hospitals. At ISHRAE, we are committed to the protection and health of all people affected or not affected and would like to contribute to this global fight against this global enemy through our participation as part of the largest body of the HVAC&R industry. This is the primary explanation of why the manual also contains a section for service technicians and the installation and maintenance of air conditioning systems.”
The Indian Society of Heating, Refrigeration and Air Conditioning Engineers (ISHRAE) was established in 1981 in New Delhi by a group of distinguished HVAC&R professionals. Today, ISHRAE has more than 28,000 HVAC&R practitioners and student leaders. ISHRAE operates from 43 chapters and sub-chapters distributed throughout India, with HQ in Delhi. This is managed by a team of elected officials who are members of the Association, who operate on a voluntary basis and are called together by the Board of Governors.
In addition, as a socially conscious organization, ISHRAE has also introduced a framework to raise the carbon footprint by holding virtual conferences for all executive meetings. Recently, an online conference of 50 + participants has been successfully organized and dedicated to sharing all available video conferencing information with other companies at email@example.com.