Here you will find the Pre-Purchase Frequently Asked Questions (FAQs) for Aeroqual’s AQY monitors.

1. What parameters can the AQY 1 measure?

The AQY 1 measures the following parameters as standard:

  • O3 – Ozone
  • NO2 – Nitrogen dioxide
  • PM2.5 – Particulate matter 2.5 microns in size
  • Temperature – Degrees Celsius or Fahrenheit
  • Relative Humidity – percentage %
  • Dew Point – Degrees Celsius or Fahrenheit

Other gases may be added in future but are currently not an option.

2. Can the AQY 1 be used to measure indoor air quality (IAQ)?

The AQY 1 is primarily designed to measure outdoor air quality (OAQ), but can be installed indoors to measure indoor air quality. It emits virtually no noise and its small size makes it easy to locate out of the way.

We have a range of indoor air quality monitors. To find out more, read our blog on indoor air quality and why you should measure it.

3. Is the AQY 1 IP rated?

The AQY 1 has a weather proof IP33 rated enclosure fitted with a solar shield.

4. Can I swap or add sensors for CO, CO2, SO2, VOCs?

The AQY 1 measures the following parameters as standard:

  • O3 – Ozone
  • NO2 – Nitrogen dioxide
  • PM2.5 – Particulate matter 2.5 microns in size
  • PM10 – Particulate matter up to 10 microns in size
  • Temperature – Degrees Celsius or Fahrenheit
  • Relative Humidity – percentage %
  • Dew Point – Degrees Celsius or Fahrenheit

Other gases may be added in future but are currently not an option.

5. Can I remove sensors if I don’t need them?

The AQY is a standard package of sensors which interoperate to improve overall measurements. For that reason we do not provide an ozone-only or PM-only AQY, for example.

6. Is it the AQY 1 able to be solar or battery powered?

The AQY 1 requires 12VDC / 24W to operate and is supplied with a power pack with mains power plug.

The AQY 1 can be powered by solar electricity as long as the supply output is compatible with the factory supplied power pack or delivers 12VDC / 24W / 2A.

7. Can it withstand high temperatures and humidity?

The AQY 1 is specified for use between -10°C to +40°C and incorporates temperature compensation. It will continue to operate outside of this range but measurement accuracy and performance may decrease.

8. Can the device measure total suspended particles?

The AQY 1 can measure the following

  • PM2.5 – Particulate matter 2.5 microns in size
  • PM10 – Particulate matter up to 10 microns in size

For total suspended particles (TSP) you will need to consider our Dust Sentry TSP, which is designed to measure and handle the larger dust volumes associated with TSP monitoring.

9. What communication options does the AQY 1 have?

The AQY 1 has the following communication options:

Standard:

  • WIFI
  • 3/3.5/4G cellular modem

Optional:

  • Silver Springs Network / Itron Edge Router (mesh network)
  • Cellular HSPA/4G-LTE modem

Other communication protocols such as LoRaWAN and Bluetooth are not yet supported.

10. Is it possible to download AQY 1 data without an Aeroqual software license?

Aeroqual Care is integral to the AQY 1, it provides many features beyond data downloading that will enhance your experience with the AQY 1, including:

  • Cloud Plus software license for data management, diagnostics and reporting
  • Auto data export via FTP and email, and Open API for access to data
  • Remote technical support and instrument health monitoring
  • Unlimited data backup and storage
  • 30% off replacement parts and sensors
  • Free automatic upgrade to the latest version of Connect and Cloud software
  • SMS and email alerts, data export API

See below for details on the API.

11. How do I access the API protocol for the AQY 1?

The API protocol can be accessed on the AQY Resources page (under Product Software).

12. Is special training required to maintain the AQY 1?

No special training is required to operate or maintain the AQY 1. The only maintenance is to replace the sensors when required which is a simple mechanical process. Refer to the ‘Sensor Replacement’ section of the AQY 1 User Guide, on the AQY Resources page.

13. How often do I need to replace the AQY 1 sensors?

The sensors supplied with your AQY 1 are intended to provide trouble free operation during the useful life of its sensors. Sensor life is roughly correlated to particulate levels – higher particulate/shorter life and vice versa. The following table is intended as a guide only.

WHO annual average PM10 (ug/m3) Example Cities Useful AQY 1 life (months)*
0 – 50 Sydney, Los Angeles, London, Hong Kong, Berlin, Singapore, Sao Paulo, Tokyo, Moscow 10 – 14
51 – 100 Seoul, Bangkok, Istanbul, Shanghai, Johannesburg. Beijing 8 – 12
101 – 150 Medina, Kuwait, Lagos 6 – 10
151 – 200 Delhi, Mumbai 4 – 8

*Useful life means the time from installation until the point when the sensor can no longer be remotely calibrated.

14. What other maintenance is required?

Apart from replacing sensors, there is no other scheduled maintenance. Unscheduled maintenance may be triggered by a system failure such as a loss of communications or power supply. With correct setup these should be rare.

15. Are there special requirements for locating and mounting the AQY 1?

The AQY 1 comes with a mounting bracket for mounting to a wall or pole. The back plate of the AQY 1 has “key-holes” to allow the bracket to be used vertically or horizontally, or you can fix the bracket using the M3 screw mount points.

When choosing a location for the AQY 1:

  • Choose a location with good airflow.
  • Install away from specific point sources e.g. kitchen vents, A/C units.

The DC side of the power adaptor has a 5m cable to allow connection to an indoor mains power socket.

16. How high off the ground should the AQY 1 be mounted?

When measuring air pollutants to understand impact on human health, the optimal sensing height is breathing height. However security is also a consideration; the device should be high enough so that people cannot reach it. Typically we recommend installation 3-5m off the ground.

17. Is the AQY 1 available without the Aeroqual Care Package?

Aeroqual Care is integral to the AQY 1, it provides many features that will enhance your experience with the AQY 1, including:

  • Cloud Plus software license for data management, diagnostics and reporting
  • Auto data export via FTP and email, and Open API for access to data
  • Remote technical support and instrument health monitoring
  • Unlimited data backup and storage
  • 30% off replacement parts and sensors
  • Free automatic upgrade to the latest version of Connect and Cloud software
  • SMS and email alerts, data export API

18. Are there consumable or spare parts required for the AQY 1?

There are no consumables or spare parts required to operate the AQY 1. The only maintenance is to replace the sensors when required. See FAQ 14 Do I need to calibrate the AQY 1 sensors?

19. Does the AQY 1 meet U.S. EPA or EU requirements?

The technology used by AQY 1 uses sensor-based measurement technology, the big advantage of this is:

  • Low cost,
  • smaller size,
  • lower power,
  • real-time data,

Currently sensor-based measurement technology does not currently conform to U.S. EPA or EU ‘reference’ standards. The standards define approved methods and no method using sensors is currently approved.

There is an EU working group to address this but at the time of writing standards are 2-3 years off.

Most activity in smart cities as far as we know is using devices based on sensor technology. In some cases customers are using a mix of sensors both reference and non-reference. The key concept of air quality monitoring in a smart city is that there is a high concentration of sensors – this isn’t achievable with a reference technology due to the high cost and large size.

Some points to note about our products:

  • AQM/AQS products can be field calibrated using standard gases (same as a reference analyzer)
  • AQY product can be field calibrated by remote comparison to a reference station
  • All Aeroqual products are NIST traceable calibrated in the factory before shipping out.

20. Has the AQY 1 been independently tested?

Yes. An independent evaluation has been completed by the Air Quality Sensor Performance Evaluation Center (AQ-SPEC). AQ-SPEC is the best known testing center to evaluate the performance of low-cost sensors. It was the first of its kind set up in the U.S., in fact probably first in the world, to objectively evaluate low-cost air sensors. Read more about how the AQY performed in our blog: AQ-SPEC evaluates AQY sensors.

Check out the independent field test results for the Aeroqual AQY from AQ-SPEC in Los Angeles. If you browse through the test result for the  other products, you will see the AQY is the only device tested so far that delivers ‘very good’ or better results for combined PM and gas measurement. Many other devices perform very badly indeed. And read here about the 100 units we are deploying across Los Angeles.

21. Do you have your own sensors or use other suppliers’ sensors like Alphasense?

The AQY 1 uses a combination of Aeroqual’s own Gas Sensitive Semiconductor (GSS) technology and third party sensors that are uniquely integrated to meet our stringent measurement requirements.

See also: FAQ 23 What kind of O3 and NO2 gas sensors are you using?

22. Who owns the data collected by the AQY 1 and is it accessible to the public for research?

The AQY 1 stores the data collected on secure ‘cloud’ servers, accessed using a login via web browser. Who owns the data collected is determined by the owner of the AQY 1. Access to the data is determined by the owner of the AQY 1. Aeroqual can access the data to facilitate technical support and maintain instrument performance.

23. Can other kinds of monitors be connected to an AQY 1 network?

Using Aeroqual Cloud software the AQY 1 can be networked with other AQY 1 and other Aeroqual air quality monitoring stations. To network data with other monitors you can use the API to bring data into your own database along with the data from other monitors in the network.

24. What kind of O3 and NO2 gas sensors are you using?

Aeroqual uses an electrochemical NO2 sensor and our proprietary and selective GSS O3 sensor in all our air quality monitoring stations, including the AQY 1. The AQY 1 has successfully applied the correction using a selective GSS O3 sensor approach in a number of field trials, achieving a very good correlation and high accuracy for NO2 (R2 >0.80 24-hr mean) against FRM analyzers (full field evaluation report). The secret to the AQY’s accuracy is the combination of an electrochemical NO2 sensor and our GSS metal oxide ozone sensor technology. Read more about the challenges with electrochemical NO2 sensors in outdoor air monitoring and how Aeroqual manages cross-interference for our GSE NO2 sensor.

25. Can external sensors like weather sensors be connected to the AQY 1?

The AQY 1 does not have the option to interface directly with external sensors. Please see our other outdoor monitoring stations that have this capability:

26. How often do the AQY 1 sensors need to be calibrated?

Aeroqual has designed the AQY 1 to minimise sensor drift. Auto zero capability helps to minimise sensor drift. Long term drift of the sensors does occur and can be corrected by calibration. AQY 1 calibration is done by comparing the data to a trusted reference source and adjusting the sensor gain and offset in the Aeroqual software. This can be done remotely through Aeroqual Cloud. If the AQY 1 are located nearby a trusted reference source calibration is likely to be beneficial and may be done frequently. If the AQY 1 are not near a trusted reference source then calibration may greatly increase measurement uncertainty and is best avoided.

27. What type of SIM card is required?

The standard modem supplied with the AQY 1 takes a Micro SIM (12x15mm).

28. If using a cellular network how much data should I budget for?

The AQY transmits and receives data. Transmitted data includes measurements and diagnostic information. Received data includes configuration and settings changes, as well as ‘over-the-air’ software updates. The total data usage varies according to how much data is received (transmitted is fairly stable). Data use between 500MB and 1.5GB is typical.

29. What is sampling frequency per sensor and can it be changed?

The sampling frequency of the sensors in the AQY 1 is per minute. This is based on the unique measurement cycle of Aeroqual sensors which have both a sampling and zero-ing component. The sampling frequency cannot be changed. Note that averaging is different; averaging can be done in Aeroqual Cloud based on 1 min, 5 min, 10 min, 15 min, 20 min, 30 min, 1 hr, 2 hr, 4 hr, 8 hr, 12 hr, 24 hr.

30. Do you have a public sample live view already?

You can login to one of our AQM 65 demo instruments at our facility in New Zealand to try our Aeroqual Cloud real-time monitoring software:

  • Aeroqual Cloud: http://cloud.aeroqual.com
  • Username: demo@aeroqual.com
  • Password: demo123
  • Directions: Log in → Select Instrument → Aeroqual Demo → Rosebank Rd → Aeroqual Sales & Marketing → Manage Data · Calibration and Service · Configure Instrument

If you’d like to add feedback (and we hope you do) please leave a comment: Journal → Add user entry → Save

31. How often do I need to buy a software license for the AQY 1?

The AQY 1 comes with two years Aeroqual Care which is integral to the AQY 1. It provides many features that will enhance your experience with the AQY 1, including:

  • Cloud Plus software license for data management, diagnostics and reporting
  • Auto data export via FTP and email, and Open API for access to data
  • Remote technical support and instrument health monitoring
  • Unlimited data backup and storage
  • 30% off replacement parts and sensors
  • Free automatic upgrade to the latest version of Connect and Cloud software
  • SMS and email alerts, data export API

After two years the Aeroqual Care license is renewable annually.

AQY1 Micro air quality monitoring system