Air pollution is an issue for many countries, especially in places like India, China, and the Middle East. But one way of fighting the health-damaging problem is through the use of air purification towers. Over in the Polish city of Kraków, a device is being installed that not only helps clean the air but also turns the smog into tiny cubes that can be embedded in jewelry.
As reported by Business Insider, The Smog Free Project is the work of Dutch artist and designer Daan Roosegaarde. It was launched on Kickstarter back in 2015, when 1577 backers help raise 113,153 Euros in funding—the original goal was 50,000 Euros.
The 23-foot machine got its debut in Rotterdam in 2015, and a year later it was taken on a tour of four Chinese cities thanks to a partnership with the Chinese Ministry of Environmental protection. Now, it’s heading for Kraków’s Jordana Park from February 16 to April 15 as part of an exhibition program.
According to Roosegaarde’s organization, Studio Roosegaard, the tower sucks in smog like a vacuum cleaner using patented positive ionization technology. The filtered air is then released through the six-sided vents. It uses an incredibly low amount of energy and can clean over 30,000 cubic meters of air an hour.
By charging the Smog Free Tower with a small positive current, an electrode will send positive ions into the air. These ions will attach themselves to fine dust particles. A negatively charged surface — the counter electrode — will then draw the positive ions in, together with the fine dust particles. The fine dust that would normally harm us, is collected together with the ions and stored inside of the tower. This technology manages to capture ultra-fine smog particles which regular filter systems fail to do.
The smog tower’s features don’t end there. In addition to cleaning the air, it’s also able to create “smog gemstones.” This is done by condensing the carbon particles it collects into tiny cubes, each the equivalent of 1000 cubic meters of clean air, that can be embedded into jewelry such as rings and cufflinks.
Roosegaarde hopes to take the tower to Los Angeles, Paris, and Mexico City in the future.
Earlier this month, it was reported that a 328-foot air purification tower—the biggest in the world—has been built in the Chinese city of Xian.