Blue Sky Thinking: Daan Roosegaarde’s Smog Vacuum Cleaner for Beijing

We’re very intrigued by Dutch designer, Dan Roosegaarde’s latest project proposal for an electronic vacuum cleaner that could tackle Beijing’s excess smog problem.

Inspired by the veil of thick smog that notoriously blankets the city most days, Roosegaarde is currently in talks with Beijing’s mayor, Guo Jinlong, to create a public park to introduce and showcase the technology. So far a working indoor prototype has been made, comprising copper coils that are buried beneath a grass surface. These coils create an electric field that attracts particles of smog to purify the air around it – holes that are approximately 50-60 meters in diameter.

“It’s a similar principle to if you have a statically charged balloon that attracts your hair. If you apply that to smog, to create fields of static electricity of ions, which literally attract or magnetise the smog so it drops down so you can clean it, like an electronic vacuum cleaner,” explained Roosegaarde in a recent interview with Dezeen.

We recently saw similar concept at the Futurotextiles3 exhibition in Lille, France, earlier this year: Helen Storey’s “Herself Dress” is made from an innovative fabric that detects pollution and cleverly breaks it down into a harmless matter, thus purifying the surrounding air. – Samantha Fox

Scroll down for images via Dezeen.

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