Fine Dust Measurement

Save favourite 4 Feb February 2019

Fine dust are small particles. Dangerous especially: Less than 10um – “PM10”: Here starts the respirability by the lung Less that 2.5 um – “PM2.5”: Here will nearly all particles going directly into the blood Less than 10nm – in scientific discussions – everywhere here starts the respirability by the cells.

Since 2016 are available cheep sensors for the measurement of the amount of particles in classes of PM10 (less than 10 µm) and PM 2.5 (less than 2.5 µm). An international network including a database was realised by a university in Germany to collect data of fine dust from all over the world. It´s an open project with the invitation to participate for everyone. Additional, are available some commercial devices but also devices, developed at the Laboratory for Measurement and instrumentation. From this two points, we attract the following tasks.

Project Goals

Task 1: The hardware of a stationary fine dust measurement system is to program according to the roles of the “” - acquirements. This system is to connect to a research database of the University of Stuttgart via internet. The measured data have to read out from the data base and to be displayed on a screen in real time.
Task 2: Aim of this task is the production of some videos, where we demonstrate how different sources lead to fine dust. The choice of examples are free. The videos should show the increase and decrease of the amount of fine dust. Used will be devices, developed at the Laboratory for measurement and instrumentation. This devices are able to measure in real-time and to store the data including time and GPS position as csv-File. This should be used to demonstrate the development of the fine dust concentration over the time and depending the locatioIf students are interested in programming (raspberry Pi, python, HTML……) here are also many tasks to improve the devices, e.g. connection of humidity sensor DHT22, synchronisation of screen update and sample rate, automatisation of excel import and so on…...
Task 3: Investigation of differences of measurement results of different kinds of measurement devices for PM10 and PM2.5. A special in particle size measurements is, that different measurement principles measure different equivalent diameter. This leads to different results. For this investigation, we have 4 different kinds of measurement devices and from each kind we have two devices (in total 8 devices). The task is to compare the accuracy of the same devices, as well as the differences of different devices.

Study Areas

the students can come from electrical engineering, mechatronics, technical computer sciences, environmental science

Electrical Engineering, Computer Engineering/Computer Science

The students contribute to the project in following fields:

  • raspberry Pi programming,
  • connection of additional sensors
  • field studies in fine dust measurements 

Environmental Science

The students contribute to the project in following fields:

  • Field studies in fine dust measurements, find sources
  • produce examples, e.g. from cars, heating plants and so on
  • Displaying the fine dust situation location and time depending
  • produce a demo movie

Apply to the project


 If you have any questions about the project, please contact

Prof. Dr.-Ing. Joerg Hoffmann, University of Applied Sciences of Osnabrueck



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