Air Quality Detection System to Create Pollen Free Environments for Asthma Patients

About: The BCAMRL is a Mechatronics Research Lab, founded in 2014 on the campus of Bergen County Academies, a magnet high school within the Bergen County Technical School District. Students create innovations base...


In order to provide fresh air to homes during pollen season without allowing pollen to get in, one must have a filtration system. Due to this, the Air Quality Detection System (AQDS) was designed to create pollen free environments for asthma patients. The AQDS is a device placed in an open window that takes in fresh air. The device uses two fans behind a filter for intake and one smaller fan for exhaust. This will allow pollen free air to come in and polluted air to exit. The fans are controlled by an Arduino attached to a pollen sensor, so that when pollen is detected in the home, the fans will run. The device is made out of an aluminum frame with plexiglass sides and mesh covering the intake and exhaust holes. Furthermore, the device uses an adjustable frame to fit in different sized windows. Thus, the Air Quality Detection System will increase the quality of air in a room by filtering incoming air and exhaust contaminated air, improving the lives of many people who suffer from asthma.

Parts List

•Aluminum Frame

•2 140mm fans

•1 80mm fan


•Mesh filter

•Arduino Uno

•Pollen Sensor


•Arduino display

•White spray paint

•Aluminum flashing

•Rubber curtain


The electronics consist of the Arduino Uno, a pollen sensor, an Arduino display, and fans. The pollen sensor detects the amount of contaminants in the environment around it. It sends this amount to the Arduino Uno which displays it on the display. The Arduino checks if this value is too high and if it is then it turns on the fans.


The .ino file containing the code for the project is attached.

Teacher Notes

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Step 1: Brainstorming

First we had to come up with the idea and how it will function and refine any flaws with. We also had to make a paper sketch to gain a better idea of what it would look like and what would be involved in making it.

Step 2: Create a CAD Drawing

We then had to transfer our idea from a sketch to a 3D diagram. From there we refined the idea in CAD and specified our measurements.

Step 3: Cutting the Frame

First we had to transfer our measurements to our metal pieces and mark where to cut. We then had to cut the metal on a band saw, after taking all of the proper safety precautions.

Step 4: Cutting the Plexiglass

This was similar to cutting the metal except instead of using the band saw, we used scissors.

Step 5: Ensure the Frame Fits

After cutting all the pieces, we assembled the frame by screwing in the corner pieces and placing the Plexiglas in the slits in the metal pieces. We then made minor adjustments and trimmed the Plexiglas to make sure everything fit together and was straight.

Step 6: Sand the Frame and Plexiglass

In order to do this, we disassembled the frame in order to better be able to sand all the pieces. We had to sand the pieces for the paint to better adhere and for the product to come out more polished. However, we had to make sure we did not sand the top piece of Plexiglas because it had to remain clear for display purposes.

Step 7: Paint the Pieces

First we started with the exterior of the metal pieces and did this by spray painting them one coat at a time to make sure it was even. We had to make sure we spray painted from a proper distance to prevent any paint from dripping and also had to wear masks to not breathe in any fumes or paint. After the exterior of the metal had dried, we flipped over the pieces and painted the interior in the same way since it will also be visible. After painting the metal, We spray painted the Plexiglas using the same process.

Step 8: Assemble the Frame

After painting the pieces, screw the aluminum frame into the corner pieces and slide in the Plexiglass, leaving the top, unpainted, Plexiglass piece out.

Step 9: Cut the Aluminum Flashing

First cut a piece of cardboard to fit in the front of the device and then cut the aluminum flashing to be able to wrap around it. Then hammer the flashing the make it flat. Cut out two round holes on the right side of the flashing for the fans, and drill 4 holes around each large hole to be able to screw in the fans.

Step 10: Mount the Fans

Screw the fans into the flashing and secure them with nuts. Cut the excess screws and slide the flashing into the devicee

Step 11: Create Air Channels

Use styrofoam to separate the intake and exhaust air channels. Then cover all of the walls of the device with styrofoam and use it to channel the air into smaller holes. Secure the styrofoam with hot glue and cut smaller pieces to place underneath larger, angled, pieces for support

Step 12: Cut Holes in the Plexiglass

Use a pencil to mark where the Plexiglass needs to be cut for the air to flow. Unscrew one side at a time to slide the Plexiglass out, use snips to cut the hole, and slide the Plexiglass back in. Do this for the front, back, and left side. Also slide in the metal mesh behind the Plexiglass before replacing the screws.

Step 13: Cut the Rubber Side Curtain

Align the curtain with the box and mark where the box end. Remove the curtain from the frame and use a saw to cut the frame and use snips to cut the curtain. Saw the remainder of the bottom portion of the frame and hot glue it the top to complete the frame. Then slide the rubber curtain back into the frame.

Step 14: Mount the Side Curtains

Place the metal bar approximately two thirds of the way from the front and drill a hole on either side to screw it into the aluminum frame. Then slide the plastic curtain frame into the metal bar and drill a hole into both to secure them.

Step 15: Wire the Electronics

Wire all of the wires from the fans around the inside left side of the device and drill a hole in the upper left of the Plexiglass to be able to route the wires to the electronics, which will be mounted to the front side of the Plexiglass.

Step 16: Mount the Electronics

Screw the Arduino holder to the front of the Plexiglass, place the Arduino with the display attached in the holder and screw it in to secure it. Then unscrew the frame to place the last piece of Plexiglass in the top, screw the frame together, and use double sided tape to attach the pollen sensor to the top

Step 17: Video



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