Demand control ventilation is a method to reduce the energy needed to operate heating, ventilation and air conditioning (HVAC) systems. Presently buildings are ventilated with outside air to keep the inside air fresh and odor free. The ventilation runs all of the time even when the ventilation is not needed. This wastes energy because the outside air needs to be heated or cooled. Demand control ventillation uses CO2 sensors to measure the indoor air quality and determine how much ventilation is needed. A fan controller is then used to adjust the ventilation rate accordingly. Less electricity and natural gas are needed for the HVAC system, which lowers energy bills and reduces the carbon footprint of the building.
Dioxide Materials is developing a new generation of low-cost, low-powered CO2 electrochemical sensors for Demand Controlled Ventilation (DCV) of HVAC systems The devices are microscale versions of the CO2 electrolyzers being developed for CO2 conversion. They use Dioxide Materials' patent pending CO2 conversion catalysts to create an electrical signal that is proportional to the amount of CO2 in the air. Key advantages of these sensors are:
DCV retrofit installations using the current generation of high-power CO2 sensors require extensive rewiring. That has limited market penetration. Dioxide Materials' low-power CO2 sensors meet the battery operating lifetime requirement, eliminating the need for costly rewiring, and, unlike competitor's IR based sensors, are compatible with wireless thermostats.
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