Exploration of Airborne Fungi in Research Building, Faculty of Science Ubon Ratchathani University
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Airborne fungi in buildings were examined at the Research and Biology Buildings located at the Faculty of Science, Ubon Ratchathani University. These consisted of staff offices, classrooms, laboratories, meeting rooms, student office and library. Each room had its temperature, relative humidity, characteristics of the room and adverse health effects investigated. The concentration of fungi per cubic meter of air was calculated, and the most common genera of fungi present were identified by macroscopic and microscopic analysis. The results showed that the average relative humidity was 66.38 RH% and average temperature was 26.26 oC. Windows and doors in most rooms were opened at least an hour per day for ventilation reasons. Fungi entered the buildings through these open doors and windows, and as contaminants of building materials and contents. Rooms with open windows and doors had statistically significant more fungal concentration compared to those rooms where windows and doors were closed at all time. The average indoor fungal concentration was approximately 900 CFU/m3. The ratio of the average indoor concentration to the average outdoor concentration was 15%. The recommended concentration of total fungi should not exceed 1,000 CFU/m3 and indoor/outdoor is about 20-50%. We noted that the presence of airborne fungi was associated with relative humidity and contamination with biological pollutants from outdoor sources. To avoid unclean outdoor air supplied through ventilation systems, we suggest users in the building to close windows at all time. These are not only reducing the risk of biological contamination but also supporting the energy efficiency in buildings.