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USE OF SIMULINK TO ADDRESS KEY FACTORS FOR RADON MITIGATION IN A FAIRBANKS HOME

Marsik, Tom; Johnson, Ron*

doi: 10.1097/01.HP.0000299272.44486.fb
Paper

Hilly areas around Fairbanks, Alaska, are known to have elevated soil radon concentrations. Due to geological conditions, cold winters, and the resulting stack effect, houses in these areas are prone to higher indoor radon concentrations. Key variables with respect to radon mitigation were addressed in this paper by using a dynamic model implemented in MATLAB Simulink. These variables included the ventilation rate; the foundation flow resistance, which can be affected by sealing the foundation during the construction of a house; and the differential pressure between the subslab and the house interior, which can be affected by using a subslab depressurization system. The model was used for the scenario of a varying differential pressure and then for the scenario of a varying ventilation rate at a Fairbanks home where real-time radon concentrations were measured. The correlation coefficients between the model-predicted and measured radon concentrations were 0.96 and 0.94, for both scenarios respectively, which verified the feasibility of the model for predicting indoor radon concentrations.

* Institute of Northern Engineering, University of Alaska Fairbanks, Fairbanks, AK 99775-5915.

For correspondence contact: Tom Marsik, University of Alaska Fairbanks, Electrical Engineering Department, P.O. Box 755915, Fairbanks, AK 99775-5915, or email at fttm1@uaf.edu.

(Manuscript accepted 5 November 2007)

©2008Health Physics Society