The purpose of this research is to develop best practices for deploying air quality sensors in a remote location such as Mongolia. I discussed the architecture and design constraints when collecting remote air quality sensors data, the challenges that emerge while implementing a sensor-based network in a remote location such as Mongolia. The tradeoffs of using different architectures are described. I observed the usage of electrical heaters in modified gers in remote locations and conclude how effective they are in reducing PM2.5 levels by analyzing air quality data and go through the process of cleaning up the data and removing humidity from low-cost sensors used to deploy in a remote location such as Mongolia so that the PM2.5 reading is more accurate. In order to help many humanitarian efforts dealing with better air quality in developing countries, an air quality sensor was designed to keep low cost as much as possible. The cost is about $200 to build, which is cheaper than other low-cost sensors, yet provides more functionality (e.g., CO2 sensing) and used cellular connectivity to upload data in real-time. This sensor has implications beyond Mongolia. The sensor can be used anywhere WiFi connectivity is not available, such as parks, bus stops, and along roadways, breaking the constraints that other low-cost sensors have. Removing the need for WiFi is a necessary step in allowing ubiquitous air quality sensing. The contributions in this thesis are: First, I presented the challenges one should consider while deploying air quality sensors in developing countries. Second, since Mongolia offers a unique environment and constraints, I shared experiences in deploying sensors in a remote location like Mongolia. This experience goes beyond air quality sensors and can inform anyone who is deploying sensors in remote areas. Third the analysis of the PM2.5 on the gers gives us better insights as to whether modifying gers with insulation and using electrical heaters as opposed to burning coal to heat up the gers makes a difference in regard to better air quality in the gers.



College and Department

Ira A. Fulton College of Engineering and Technology



Date Submitted


Document Type





wireless sensor networks, remote sensing, system applications and experience, data analysis, internet of things, air quality



Included in

Engineering Commons