Car park filters ‘could halve city air pollution’

Installing air purification equipment in underground car parks can reduce harmful particulate matter by up to half. Researchers from Eindhoven’s University of Technology have successfully tested an innovative filtering system […]

By Jonny Bairstow

Installing air purification equipment in underground car parks can reduce harmful particulate matter by up to half.

Researchers from Eindhoven’s University of Technology have successfully tested an innovative filtering system from ENS Technology to remove soot and smoke particles from the air.

The car park filters¬†capture harmful, fine airborne dust and converts it to a coarser material that can’t be carried on the wind.

Researchers simulated the effect they would have on the city centre’s pollution levels and air flow. The simulated area covered 5.1 square kilometres and included 16 underground car parks.

Placing 99 purifiers in these car parks decreased particulate matter concentrations in the surrounding area by up to 10%. Using 594 air purification units, the 10% reduction was observed over a much larger area of up to a kilometre. In certain locations pollution was reduced by as much as 50%.

Lia Van De Vorle, ENS Director said: “Since the ventilation systems of the underground car parks are in contact with the streets and shopping zones above, these garages have a considerable influence on the air quality in the city center. By eliminating the particulate matter in these places and by ventilating clean air into the city, underground car parks act as cleansing lungs.”

The team eventually plans to install air purification systems across a variety of city infrastructure such as tunnels, train and bus stations, viaducts and traffic junctions.

Recent research shows air pollution could increase the risk of dementia.

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