Skip to main content

Research Repository

Advanced Search

Towards improved bioaerosol model validation and verification

Williams, Ben; Hayes, Enda; Nasir, Zaheer; Rolph, Catherine; Jackson, Simon; Khera, Shagun; Bennett, Alan; Gladding, Toni; Drew, Gillian; Longhurst, James; Tyrrel, Sean


Ben Williams
Research Fellow in Air Quality Management Resource Centre

Profile Image

Enda Hayes
Professor in Air Quality and Carbon Management

Zaheer Nasir

Catherine Rolph

Simon Jackson

Shagun Khera

Alan Bennett

Toni Gladding

Gillian Drew

Sean Tyrrel


Bioaerosols, comprised of bacteria, fungi and viruses are ubiquitous in ambient air. Known to adversely affect human health, the impact of bioaerosols on a population often manifests as outbreaks of illnesses such as Legionnaires Disease and Q fever, although the concentrations and environmental conditions in which these impacts occur are not well understood. Bioaerosol concentrations vary from source to source, but specific industrialised human activities such as water treatment, intensive agriculture and open windrow composting facilitate the generation of bioaerosol concentrations many times higher than natural background levels. Bioaerosol sampling is currently undertaken according to the requirements of the Environment Agency’s regulatory framework, in which the collection of bioaerosols and not its long term measurement is of most importance. As a consequence, sampling devices are often moved around site according to changing wind direction and sampling intervals are invariably short-term. The dispersion modelling of bioaerosols from composting facilities typically relies on proxy pollutant parameters. In addition, the use of short term emission data gathering strategies in which monitors are moved frequently with wind direction, do not provide a robust reliable and repeatable dataset by which to validate any modelling or to verify its performance. New sampling methods such as the Spectral Intensity Bioaerosol Sensor (SIBS) provide an opportunity to address several gaps in bioaerosol model validation and verification. In the context of model validation, this paper sets out the current weaknesses in bioaerosol monitoring from the perspective of robust modelling requirements


Williams, B., Hayes, E., Nasir, Z., Rolph, C., Jackson, S., Khera, S., …Tyrrel, S. (2018, June). Towards improved bioaerosol model validation and verification. Paper presented at 26th International Conference on Modelling, Monitoring and Management of Air Pollution

Presentation Conference Type Conference Paper (unpublished)
Conference Name 26th International Conference on Modelling, Monitoring and Management of Air Pollution
Start Date Jun 19, 2018
End Date Jun 21, 2018
Acceptance Date Jul 10, 2018
Peer Reviewed Not Peer Reviewed
Public URL
Additional Information Title of Conference or Conference Proceedings : 26th International Conference on Modelling, Monitoring and Management of Air Pollution