A new system has been developed that can remove pollution from the air while using less energy and requiring less maintenance than other technologies. Tests have found that a gas phase advanced oxidation system (GPAO) can eliminate a wide variety of toxic chemicals from the air, including hydrocarbons, sulfur compounds, and benzene. The technology’s inventor, Professor Matthew Johnson from the University of Copenhagen, points out that since the system works by removing dust from the air, it also eliminates pollen, spores, and viruses.
A summary of testing done on the GPAO system was published in Environmental Science and Technology. The method uses fluorescent lights to mix air with ozone, producing free radicals. These stick to the pollution to create dust. Once the pollution is in dust form, it can be easily captured by any surface with an electrical charge, meaning the system works without needing the charcoal filters common to other pollution elimination technologies. The system has been commercialized since 2013 and is currently being used at a wastewater treatment plant to eliminate foul smells.