Air Sensor Workgroup

Collaborative development of standards and infrastructure for air quality data

The Air Sensor Workgroup (ASW) is a broad-based collaboration that support the rapidly growing community of people developing and using sensor-based air quality devices. The ASW's goal is to advance this technology sector with infrastructural support including adoption of data standards and provision of an open data platform, the Air Quality Data Commons (AQDC).

EDF brought this group together and has been leading the effort to achieve democratization of air quality data to improve the understanding of people’s exposure to air pollution. This group furthers the principles of air quality data being open and FAIR (Findable, Accessible, Interoperable, and Reusable).

Data standards will enable the use of standardized terms and data structures, identify key data elements necessary to describe the data, and provide common data exchange formats.

The AQDC will provide for centralized data storage and enable analysis and visualization of neighborhood-level air quality data. The AQDC will also provide infrastructure to perform big data computation and allow for data products to understand the sensor response and encourage the community to develop data-driven solutions to cleaner air.


ASW initial goals are to:

  1. Promote development of data standards for the air quality domain
  2. Adopt standardized definitions of terms or ontology for air quality measurements
  3. Promote uniform, common and standard units of measurement for pollutants and meteorological parameters affecting air quality
  4. Promote development of an open-access and open-source data platform, the AQDC, to collect and store data from low- and medium-cost air sensors while maintaining the necessary privacy and security of data
  5. Develop tools to analyze air quality data and facilitate expeditious development of data products
  6. Develop simple visualizations of data to provide graphical representation for researchers
  7. Collaborate with sensor manufacturers to facilitate adoption of data standards
  8. Encourage the development of auto-calibration methods for sensors
  9. Promote development of data products to facilitate scaling of sensor network deployments

Who's involved

Air Sensor Workgroup is a collaboration of experts who believe low-cost air sensors have the potential to change our understanding of people's exposure to air pollution. The combination of distributed sensor networks and mobile-ready sensor applications present a unique opportunity to monitor air quality with unprecedented spatio-temporal resolution. If pollutant concentrations can be reliably quantified, such sensors could inform the sources and fate of air pollution impacting our communities.

To achieve this vision, ASW will be developing data standards and guidelines, and provide infrastructure to host readily accessible data along with metadata that can be analyzed and interpreted by anyone.

Media contact

Sharyn Stein (202) 572-3396 (office)
(202) 905-5718 (cell)
envelope Email