Wilde Lake Middle School and the Aircuity System: Reliable DCV for a Net Zero Project
Howard County Public Schools in Maryland set out to construct a new, net zero energy (NZE) middle school to replace an aging facility. To achieve this goal, the Aircuity system was installed in all classroom and assembly areas of the new Wilde Lake Middle School. The Aircuity system helped the project become Maryland’s first NZE school and LEED Platinum Certified.
After the building opened, personnel noticed something strange. During the weekend when the school was empty, Aircuity’s data showed CO2 levels within classrooms dropping below ambient conditions and rising back up as students and staff returned on Monday morning. The Aircuity system played a crucial role in the investigation, and helped rule out a number of causes, eventually showing that the strange CO2 readings were the result of concrete carbonization. This would resolve itself overtime as the concrete cured.
This shows how important air quality monitoring and control is for energy efficient buildings with tight envelopes. Also interesting to note is that if the school had used auto recalibrating CO2 sensors instead of Aircuity the readings would have been over 200 PPM high if they were thinking the inside air was at ambient.