Ulla Haverinen-Shaughnessy, D. Sc. – Cleaning Verification Research & Standards

Air Date: 1-31-2014 | Episode: 313


Dr. Haverinen-Shaughnessy is a Senior Researcher at the Institute for Health and Wellbeing Environmental Health Department (THL), Kuopio, Finland, a Docent of Engineering, Healthy Buildings, Tampere University of Technology and a Visiting Professor at the University of Tulsa, Oklahoma…

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Dr. Haverinen-Shaughnessy is a Senior Researcher at the Institute for Health and Wellbeing Environmental Health Department (THL), Kuopio, Finland, a Docent of Engineering, Healthy Buildings, Tampere University of Technology and a Visiting Professor at the University of Tulsa, Oklahoma. She has done extensive research on IAQ, health, dampness, remediation effectiveness and testing post cleaning.. This week we intend to focus on her recent research on ATP as a Marker for Surface Contamination in Schools and a Potential Approach to the Measurement of Cleaning Effectiveness. This approach was adopted in the new ISSA Clean Standard for K-12 Schools. ATP continues to be more accepted in the cleaning and restoration industry.

Z-Man’s Blog:

Commuting Professor

Dr. Ulla Haverinen-Shaughnessy’s said that her interest in engineering and building science was inherited from her father, a civil engineer in Finland. Dr. Haverinen-Shaughnessy (Dr. H-S) is a Senior Researcher at the Institute for Health and Wellbeing Environmental Health Department (THL), Kuopio, Finland, a Docent of Engineering, Healthy Buildings, Tampere University of Technology and a Visiting Professor at the University of Tulsa, Oklahoma. Dr. H-S commutes between Finland and the US. She has done extensive research on building science, IAQ, health, dampness, remediation effectiveness and testing post cleaning. This week we focused on her recent research on ATP as a Marker for Surface Contamination in Schools and a Potential Approach to the Measurement of Cleaning Effectiveness. This approach was adopted in the new ISSA Clean Standard for K-12 Schools.

Nuggets mined from this week’s episode:

· Finland is a cold climate. Buildings in Finland do not have air conditioning. Finland has abundant forests and wood is commonly used in residential construction.

· Finland is focused on energy efficient tight buildings. Euro Directives mandate -0- energy building by 2016. Homes in Finland have 19.65” of wall insulation. Buildings in Finland rely on multiple fresh air sources to distribute fresh air throughout buildings.

· She opined that Scandinavian European researchers are further ahead in the study of the effects of: air-tightness, moisture, ventilation in buildings.

· Carpet is absent in Finland.

· She opined that there is more active research in ventilation in schools and cleanliness in schools in the US.

· It’s common for Fins take off their shoes when they enter residences and schools.

· In older schools in Finland, classes are taught for 45 minutes and then students go outside for 15 minutes while classroom windows are opened for ventilation.

· Anyone surprised that US schools have more clutter than schools in Finland?

· Dr. H-S began researching the effect of school ventilation on student performance in elementary schools 10 years ago. Data from 100 schools could define substandard ventilation with lower test scores. Research finding is that there is an association between ventilation and test scores. Ventilation rates which fell below ASHRAE recommendations was associated with lower test scores in math and reading on yearly achievement exams. The % of satisfactory test scores increases 2-3% with each liter of fresh air supplied per second. She feels that this measurement is reliable and standardized.

· Research into school ventilation piqued her interest 5 years ago in the relationship between cleanliness in schools and student performance.

· ATP is short for adenosine triphosphate, a chemical that is produced in every living cell. Presence of ATP on a surface tells us that there is something on that surface that is, or was recently, alive.

· ATP has traditionally been utilized as a tool to monitor cleanliness in food safety and healthcare. From the list of available ATP systems, 3 were selected for use in the school study.

· To develop a baseline of cleanliness; ATP sampling from 4 nonporous “high touch point surfaces” was done in thirty schools in a geographic region (desks, cafeteria tables, restroom sinks and restroom stall doors). A 2”x 2” template was used for sampling consistency. Samples were taken both pre and post cleaning. Sampling was widened to other geographic areas to validate the method. Checklists for visual assessment and gathering of relevant background information were developed for use in conjunction with the sampling. Swab sampling for microbes was also done and compared to the numeric ATP readings. Swab sampling results and ATP readings trended similarly. Fluorescent marking was also used to assist in determining whether a tagged surface had been adequately cleaned. The study proposes “target levels” and allows schools to select cleaning products and techniques.

· Some cleaning products may skew ATP sampling. ATP doesn’t find asbestos, lead, pesticides or other HAZMATs. ATP doesn’t differentiate between pathogenic and beneficial microbes, cleaning with bacterial and enzyme based products isn’t recommended when ATP sampling will be used.

· The ISSA has published a standard based upon the research of Dr. H-S and others. http://www.issa.com/?id=clean_standard

Tips: Over ventilation, overheating and overcooling waste energy, we need to find the optimal rates. It’s a mistake to not adjust for ventilation for new construction. Renovation is an opportunity to also improve energy efficiency and IAQ.

Her Wish List: More funding, to prove the connection between ventilation and performance and to prove that cleanliness improves health and performance.

Today’s music: Maamme (Finland) Parody, Thdubya YouTube

Z-Man signing off

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