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Old Posted May 10, 2011, 1:36 PM
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Introducing The Self-Cleaning, Smog-Eating Building

Introducing The Self-Cleaning, Smog-Eating Building


May 9, 2011

By Ariel Schwartz



Read More: http://www.fastcompany.com/1752324/i...ating-building

Website: http://www.alcoa.com/bcs/aap_eastman...an/en/home.asp

Quote:
Alcoa has come up with a potential solution for that most unpleasant of man-made environmental issues: the smog-eating building. Alcoa's Reynobond with Ecoclean cleans both itself and the air around it, by decomposing smog, dirt, diesel fumes, and all the other nasty pollutants that hover around building surfaces. Alcoa claims that 10,000 square feet of the panels have the equivalent air-cleansing power of 80 trees. No need for trees when you have buildings that eat smog!

- As the primary component of smog, NOx not only makes buildings dirty, but it also threatens the quality of the air we breathe. But when NOx molecules float near the surface of Reynobond with EcoClean, they are attacked by free radicals generated from the titanium dioxide reacting with water and oxygen in the air. The free radicals oxidize the NOx molecules, converting them to a harmless nitrate. In this way, Reynobond with EcoClean constantly works to remove pollutants by using sunlight and the water vapor and oxygen in the air to clean the air itself.

.....



http://www.alcoa.com/bcs/aap_eastman...ean/en/how.asp

The air-cleaning properties of Reynobond® with EcoClean™, Powered by HYDROTECT™ begin with the reaction created by titanium dioxide when exposed to sunlight. When sunlight strikes a particle of titanium dioxide, electrons within the particle become excited, creating a higher state of energy within the electrons. The energized electrons transfer energy to water in the air and form free radicals, -OH (hydroxyl radicals) and O2- (superoxide anions). These free radicals are both powerful oxidizers that can attack any organic material either on the panel’s surface or floating near it.




Electrons in the TiO2 become energized by UV light.






These electrons transfer energy to oxygen and water in the air.






Free radicals are formed by the transferred energy (O2-, .OH).






The free radicals attack and destroy organic matter via oxidation.






.OH free radicals called hydroxyls group on the surface of EcoClean™.






The hydroxyls make the building surface super slick. Instead of beading up on the surface, the water collapses on the surface and runs off, undercutting dirt and grime.

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Old Posted May 10, 2011, 9:16 PM
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Cool idea, though it sounds incredibly complex and expensive for the equivalent of only 80 trees.
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Old Posted May 10, 2011, 9:51 PM
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If China had this in most of their buildings it would be most welcome.
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Old Posted May 20, 2011, 4:49 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by arkhitektor View Post
Cool idea, though it sounds incredibly complex and expensive for the equivalent of only 80 trees.
Not really. Titanium dioxide is a pretty common material - you'll recognize it as the white pigment used in paints and other applications. In this case, however, TiO2 has been spiked with nitrogen ions or doped with a metal oxide to serve as a photocatalyst under UV or visible light.

And though it may serve the same function that 80 trees would in absorbing NOx, I bet that many allergy sufferers would welcome the reduction in tree pollen. Not that this is an adequate argument for getting rid of trees, but it's something.
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