Dirty Buildings Are Creating Dirty Air | TakePart

19 Aug


They found 10 percent fewer nitrates in the samples exposed to sunlight compared with those gathering grime in the dark. Donaldson presented his results at the National Meeting & Exposition of the American Chemical Society on Monday.

Those compounds are turning into some kind of atmospheric nitrogen oxides, which could be creating more smog-causing ozone.

Donaldson hopes to do another set of experiments in a city with high levels of air pollution, such as Shanghai, and to quantify the nitrates returning to the air as nitrogen oxides in different cities.

Could self-cleaning buildings be a solution? Alcoa, for instance, has developed a building panel coated in titanium dioxide particles that, the company says, when hit by sunlight breaks down organic matter on the panel as well as nitrogen oxide in the surrounding atmosphere. 


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