Photocatalytic Ashtray Sucks Pollution From The Air

According to the World Health Organization, air pollution in cities across the world causes about 2 million premature deaths every year. Between cars, factories, and chemical emissions, people in many countries must often avoid going outside because of thick, visible air pollution. And things aren’t much better indoors. Chemical based cleaners, fragrances, and paints mean indoor air can often be more polluted than what’s outside!

If this news makes you want to test your breath-holding skills, don’t panic: A group of architects, engineers and designers in Poland have been working on a solution that is both efficient and practical. The creative minds at andervision LLC have been working with TioCem, a cement with nano titanium dioxide, to create everyday products that can purify the air without using electricity or fragrances.

cubeast-air-purifying-concrete

Image via andervision LLC/Indiegogo

The smoke-hungry creature you see above is called Cubeast. He’s an ashtray made of an architectural photocatalytic concrete, a material made from very clean quartz powder, special nano cement TioCem, and other strong, recyclable ingredients. Because of its nano crystalline structure it is a photocatalyst which decomposes air pollutants by photocatalysis, an accelerated oxidation process that already exists in nature.

“During sunny weather , the air can be cleaned by photocatalysis up to 90 percent of aldehyd, nitrogen oxides, benzenes and chlorinated aromatic compounds,” write the designers. “During bad weather, up to 70 percent of the pollutants are still eliminated and the process is permanent without consuming the photocatalyst.”

eco-concrete-winetree

Image via andervision LLC

The creative minds at andervision LLC have use their design and architectural knowledge to create practical objects, like candle holders and wine racks (want!) from this pollution-sucking material. Now, they’ve launched an Indiegogo crowdfunding campaign to raise the $9,500 they need to produce these products commercially. For just $36, you could be the proud owner of your very own chunk of photocatalytic concrete!

Beth Buczynski is a freelancer writer and editor currently living in the Rocky Mountain West. Her articles appear on Care2, Ecosalon and Inhabitat, just to name a few. So far, Beth has lived in or near three major U.S. mountain ranges, and is passionate about protecting the important ecosystems they represent. Follow Beth on Twitter as @ecosphericblog