Scientific activity

The main applied research done in the LCMA is shown in the peer-reviewed published articles, technical and research reports, assistance to congresses, patents and projects, and it is essentially based in the evaluation of volatile organic compounds (VOC), which are present in a high number of processes and industrial activities. A thorough characterization of VOC in air allows a real assessment of air quality in urban areas, the optimization of production processes in industry, the creation of new low-emission materials, the determination of VOC reduction efficiencies in air cleaning systems, the prediction of illnesses through the evaluation of exhaled air, etc…


The application of the research and innovation conducted at our laboratory has permitted us the design of several products and tools validated at real scale with the appliance of acknowledged quality control criteria:


    • Sampling devices with activation through social control or through remote control (mobile phones, radiofrequency)
    • Sorbent tubes (multi-sorbent bed tubes) suitable for a wide range of volatile organic compounds (indispensable for odour characterization)
    • High precision numeric modelling systems with a high definition of the wind field
    • Back-trajectory calculation systems for the determination of the origin of odorous episodes using a nuisance/odorous register


Obtained results at real scale:


- 100% capture of short and long duration odorous episodes

- Determination of odour units/m3 for individual compounds

- Identification and quantification of a wide range of compounds:

Waste treatment facilities (ecoparc):

Biofilters emissions: 184 VOC detected (18 aromatic hydrocarbons, 11 alcohols, 8 ketones, 8 organohalogenated, 12 aldehydes. 20 esters, 8 terpenes, ...)

Indoor air: 155 VOC detected

Biogas: 148 VOC detected

Air quality in urban areas:

Urban areas with food industry impacts: 144 VOC detected

Indoor air in dwellings with external impacts: 161 VOC detected

Indoor air in dwellings with impacts from construction materials: 138 VOC detected

Exhaled air/breath: 87 VOC detected

Vegetal species emissions: 112 VOC detected

- Identification of the origin of odour episodes through back-trajectory calculation

- Evaluation of pollution/odorous impact of current and future activities

Biomass combustion plants

Baled waste deposits

Waste treatment facilities (ecoparcs, solid municipal waste and industrial waste incinerators, landfills, composting facilities)

Waste water treatment plants

Chemical facilities

- Evaluation of air cleaning systems (sorbents, photocatalytics)