Dutch artist and innovator Daan Roosegaarde has created a giant vacuum cleaner that tackles air pollution and turns the waste from the smog into jewellery.
It sounds too good to be true, but Dutch artist and innovator Daan Roosegaarde and his team of experts have come up with an ingenious way to turn air pollution into beautiful jewellery.
Our video explains the project in action in the light of new research proving that the Smog Free Tower actually works.
Roosegaarde’s inspiration is the Dutch word ‘schoonheid’, which describes the concept of the ‘beauty of cleanliness’.
Roosegaarde believes schoonheid is a fundamental human right and a driver to create better conditions in our cities.
It’s an activator for change and empowers citizens, governments and NGOs to do something to save the environment for future generations.
We shouldn’t just accept air pollution as a fact of life.
“We are all makers, not consumers. We should be a part of the solution instead of the problem,” says Roosegaarde.
Becoming part of the solution
In an attempt to be part of the solution, Roosegaarde has designed the world’s largest air purifier, the Smog Free Tower, which cleans 30,000m3 of air per hour.
The tower takes dirty, polluted air, filters the deadly PM2.5 and PM10 particles using patented ozon-free ion technology, and then releases it back into the environment.
The result is pockets of purified air around the 7m tall tower, which will be placed in parks in cities across the globe.
The clever design runs on green wind energy and uses no more electricity than a waterboiler, making it energy efficient and portable.
According to the latest independent research by Eindhoven University of Technology (May 2017), the Smog Free Tower captures and removes up to 70 per cent of the ingested PM10 and up to 50 per cent of the ingested PM2.5.
Statement from Eindhoven University of Technology
On 10 May 2017, Prof. dr. Bert Blocken, Eindhoven University of Technology, the Netherlands, and Leuven University, Belgium, issued the following statement regarding the efficiency of Studio Roosegaarde’s Smog Free Tower:
“The Smog Free Tower works with the proven ENS technology of positive ionization to remove large fractions of particulate matter from the air in its immediate surroundings.
Both the technology and the Smog Free Tower itself have been successfully evaluated with both field measurements and numerical simulations with Computational Fluid Dynamics.
The results confirm that the tower captures and removes up to 70% of the ingested PM10 and up to 50% of the ingested PM2.5. For a tower in an open field in calm weather, this provides PM10 reductions up to 45% and PM2.5 reductions up to 25% in a circle with diameter of more than 20m around the tower.
When the tower is applied in semi-enclosed or enclosed courtyards, the beneficial effects can be much larger.”
Smog Free Project
The Smog Free Tower is part of Studio Roosegaarde’s Smog Free Project, which includes the Smog Free Ring and Smog Free Bicycle.
Believing that there should be no waste in the future, the Smog Free Project use the waste from the Smog Free Tower – the carbon in the smog itself – to create synthetic diamonds that they incorporate into a ring.
So, by sharing a Smog Free Ring you donate 1,000m3 of clean air to the city where the Smog Free Tower is located.
Also in the pipeline are Smog Free Bicycles, which generates clean air by pedalling. The innovative bicycle inhales polluted air, filters it and releases clean air back into the atmosphere.
The design is in its early stages, but Studio Roosegaarde is keen to work with China’s existing bike-sharing schemes to get the Smog Free Bicycle in cities across China. Existing scheme Mobike records more than one million public bikes in Beijing alone, so the potential is huge.
“Beijing used to be an iconic bicycle city,” says Roosegaarde. “We want to bring back the bicycle as a cultural icon of China and as the next step towards smog free cities.”
The Smog Free Ring and Smog Free Bicycles allow everyone to get involved in the project. The responsibility to protect our environment for future generations rests with all of us.
Citizens, governments and technology must work collaboratively if we are to have any chance of saving the planet.
The Smog Free Tower is currently on tour in China, where air pollution is so bad that children sometimes have to be kept indoors due to the severity of the smog.
More than 80 per cent of people living in urban areas are exposed to air-quality levels that exceed the World Health Organisation’s limits.
The Smog Free Tower was well received at its first stop in Beijing, where people hailed the design as ‘clean air temples’ because of its similarity to traditional Chinese pagodas.
In 41 days, the Smog Free Tower cleaned 30 million m3 of Beijing’s air – that’s equivalent to the size of 10 Beijing National Stadiums.
So it looks like Studio Roosegaarde’s Smog Free Tower really is schoonheid in action. It has been proven to work and can now clean the air that we breathe in polluted cities across the world, making urban environments more beautiful for all.