Radon: The Hidden Hazard in Buildings

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Touchaphong Srisuwan


Radon is a ubiquitous radioactive noble gas, which has no taste, smell nor color, and cannot be
detected by any of human’s sensations. It is known to be the first leading cause of lung cancer among nonsmokers.
As a result, radon has been recognized as one of the most hazardous indoor air pollutions exposed
to human beings. There are numerous research about physical properties of radon, and its effect on human
and animals, as well as techniques of radon reduction in building. Besides, many countries have promulgated
a standard for radon concentration in building (such as the United States of America, the United Kingdom,
the Netherlands, and Germany).

One of the most effective ways of radon prevention is to tackle to problem at its root during the initial
building design process. Nowadays, there are many techniques to prevent buildings from radon entering as
such active soil-depressurization, building pressurization, etc. Each technique is different in effectiveness as
well as pros and cons depending on building types and budgets. Therefore, architects play a very important
role in order to reduce radon gas in buildings as much as possible which will affect people’s well being and
quality of life in the future.


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