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Air purifier sales spike in India as its cities battle pollution

As the government fumbles over effective measures to curb severe air quality in India’s capital of New Delhi, people are increasingly looking at air purifiers for relief.

SEE ALSO: NASA reveals why New Delhi is blanketed with deadly smog

Major ecommerce businesses in India are reporting significant surge in the sales of air purifier units in the country. The product category, which has existed in India for over two decades but struggled to become a household name, has suddenly become a talking point among people on social media.

Amazon India says it sold three times more air purifiers this Diwali compared to the previous month. Almost half of all these orders came from cities such as Delhi, Gurgaon and Bangalore. Flipkart had similar findings, noting that it has seen 2.5 times growth in air purifier units sale compared to last year.

The sudden interest in air purifying products among people comes as several Indian cities report of increasingly growing air pollution after Diwali. The festival of light, which sees many people burst crackers, combined with the burning of farmlands and residual fodders in nearby states, have resulted in an unprecedented severe air quality in New Delhi and several other states in India.

Five days after Diwali, for instance, the air quality index reading of the national capital is still classified as “hazardous”. A report on UNICEF published this week found that over two billion children worldwide breathe polluted air. India and China were among the most affected countries.

Not just air purifiers, but people are also actively looking for air masks for immediate comfort. “Sales of pollution masks have jumped 6X in the last few days with customer demand being 13X over last year. The highest number of orders for pollution masks were placed by customers on Nov. 1. The demand continues to be high from northern India with most orders coming from Delhi,” an Amazon India spokesperson told Mashable India. The surge in sales happened a couple of days after Diwali, which fell on Oct. 30 this year.

Air purifier 1/4 substandard! Leopard meters and other brands on the list

Recently, the State Quality Inspection Administration announced the 10 categories with the daily lives of consumers in relation to the national product quality supervision and inspection results, the air purifier products pass rate for 75.4%, that is to say, the sale of each of the four City air purifier, one belonging to the unqualified products.

The sample for the air purifier for the first time national supervision, a total sample of 8 provinces (city) 56 production of 61 batches of products, the total number of enterprises nationwide checks nearly 1/5 production enterprises, the basic coverage of all the well-known brands in the industry. The products were tested for safety index, performance index and electromagnetic compatible index ect. 3 aspect 21 projects.

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< weekly quality report > Video: survey on quality of air cleaner

15 batches of product purification performance is not qualified

The performance index of the consumers are most concerned about, is to detect the air purification ability, test results show that the 14 production of 15 batches of substandard products, substandard products detected in the 24.6%. particle amount of clean air, there are 2 batches of substandard particles accumulation amount of purified 1 batches of unqualified, formaldehyde purification efficiency (effectiveness) of 3 batches of unqualified noise, 5 batches of substandard.

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Substandard products and production enterprises are:

Beijing Jing Mei Shi environmental science and Technology Co., Ltd. is the nominal net beauty of the United States Shi mfresh air purifier;

Lang Yi environmental protection technology (Shanghai) Co., Ltd. (manufacturer: Leopard meter information technology (Shanghai) Co., Ltd.) nominal for the leopard meter air purifier;

Long Yi environmental protection technology (Shanghai) Co., Ltd. (manufacturer: Zhejiang primitive life Electric Appliance Co., Ltd.), the nominal as the original air purifier;

Air cleaner of MITSUBISHI heavy industry air conditioning system (Shanghai) Co., ltd.;

Nominal Shanghai Lifana enterprise development limited for the ion air purifier refinair;

Shanghai SIASUN Electronics Co., Ltd. is a nominal somputon SIASUN SIASUN air purifier;

Morrell appliances (Kunshan) Co., Ltd. is moral nominal Morrell Antarctic wind h03;

Zhejiang Yitian Energy Environmental Technology Co. Ltd. as the nominal air purifier Yusana;

Malata Zhangzhou Electric Appliance Co., Ltd. is a nominal air purifier for Malata;

Guangdong Clean Technology Co., Ltd. is a nominal kbis air health machine.

Safety performance is not up to the existence of risk of electric shock

Air purifier as a kind of household appliances, the safety index is mandatory, according to the national mandatory standards for household appliances to detect.

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The spot checks found that the safety performance of substandard products: 

Shanghai Qin Zhuo Electronics Co. Ltd. (manufacturer: Shanghai Hao Ze Kang Ford Environmental Technology Co. Ltd.) the nominal haoze novowater air purifier;

Kunshan Xin Yi nominal Motor Technology Co. Ltd. as the thin air purifier sheeraire seats ireland;

Morrell appliances (Kunshan) Co., Ltd. is moral nominal Morrell Antarctic wind H03;

Zhejiang Yitian Energy Environmental Technology Co. Ltd. as the nominal air purifier Yusana;

Guangdong Net Technology Co., Ltd. is the nominal kbis of the air health machine;

Weishimao Ann commercial electronic technology (Zhuhai) Co., Ltd. (manufacturer: Zhongshan city life equipment Technology Co. Ltd.) the nominal yeah should Wyatt air purifier;

Shenzhen City Department of the Qing Dynasty, the nominal for the exchange of clean technology air purifier.

Most product batches compatibility substandard 

Most of the families would also have many electrical appliances, so these appliances put together, can coexist peacefully, will not interfere with each other? EMC performance of air purifier is mandatory. The state supervision and inspection results announced, the electromagnetic compatibility is the most unqualified batch tests, including continuous harassment the voltage project has 8 batches of substandard, continuous harassment power projects 4 batches of substandard.

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Electromagnetic compatibility substandard products include: 

Lang Yi environmental protection technology (Shanghai) Co., Ltd. (manufacturer: Leopard meter information technology (Shanghai) Co., Ltd.) nominal for the leopard meter air purifier;

Nominal Shanghai Lifana enterprise development limited for the ion air purifier ReFinAIR;

Shanghai SIASUN Electronics Co., Ltd. is a nominal SOMPUTON SIASUN SIASUN air purifier;

Nominal Suzhou beiang for domestic air purifier beiang;

Morrell appliances (Kunshan) Co., Ltd. is MORAL nominal Morrell Antarctic wind H03;

Zhejiang Yitian Energy Environmental Technology Co. Ltd. as the nominal air purifier Yusana;

Guangdong Net Technology Co., Ltd. is the nominal KBIS of the air health machine;

Weishimao Ann commercial electronic technology (Zhuhai) Co., Ltd. (manufacturer: Zhongshan city life equipment Technology Co. Ltd.) the nominal yeah should Wyatt air purifier;

Shenzhen City Department of the Qing Dynasty, the nominal for the exchange of clean technology air purifier.

Select six core indicators for air purifier

The sample of 61 batches of products, 35 batches of products in March 1, 2016 since the implementation of the GB/T 18801-2015< air purifier > the latest national standard, accounting for the total number of checks the product 57.4%. to the latest national standard does not execute the product, its performance index was determined in accordance with the inspection standards and product quality requirements. The experts express said that enterprises do not implement the new national standard does not mean that the enterprise can reduce the quality of products, in fact, mainstream domestic brands all express enterprises have to implement the new national standard.

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In carrying out the inspection work at the same time, in order to guide consumers to purchase, quality inspection departments also carried out detection and comparison of product key performance index, were all random products of particle clean air volume (CADR), formaldehyde (CADR), the amount of clean air purification efficiency of particulate matter (performance), formaldehyde purification efficiency (performance), particulate matter (CCM), the cumulative amount of purified six key performance indicators such as noise detection and single detection value together with the inspection results be announced to the public, and guide consumers to carry out scientific and rational choice of products.

Experts suggest that if consumers choose to air purifier products, priority selection to determine the qualified product. “Since the implementation of the new GB products, on one hand, it is through the quality, on the other hand also shows that the nominal value of sound, not deceive consumers suspected”

Experts suggest that the haze of consumers are concerned about the selection of particulate matter purification capacity is relatively good purifier. You need to see the removal of formaldehyde CADR indicators relatively large purifier.

 

 

While The Government Is Taking Its Own Time, These People Are Fighting For Clean Air

The conversation around air pollution is not a new one for India with several attempts being made in the past – some successful and some not as much – to educate citizen on the need to combat air pollution through the year.

Unfortunately, despite an all round effort to clean up the air, the results are bleak. With Delhi topping the chart in the country with the most polluted air. There have been some individuals who have worked against the odds to fight to the right to better air quality in the country.

Namita Gupta

Air Warrior

Namita Gupta has been surviving on antibiotics because of pollution. What bothered her even more was the discomfort her daughter, who is an asthma patient, faced. She thought of shifting to the US when the idea of making an app that could monitor pollution struck her. She decided against the plan and created an App from scratch. Her App, Airveda, helps monitor air pollution levels and is quite simple to operate.

Saurabh Bhasin

Air Warrior

Shocked by the impact of air pollution on him as well as his family, Saurabh Bhasin and his wife have launched a legal battle with the Delhi government for cleaning the city’s air. Among the plaintiffs is his 15-month-old daughter and two other other toddlers. The case has been filed in the Supreme Court stating that the poisonous air deprives them of their “right to life” as guaranteed by the Constitution.

“I don’t expect things to improve overnight, but I do want to see government bodies take cognisance of how drastic it is, and take some serious measures to make it better,” Bhasin told the media.

Swechha Foundation

Air Warrior

The Swechha Foundation has been promoting plantation drives across Delhi and promoting better eco-health in sensitive zones like the Yamuna among many others. During the monsoon months each year, the foundation conducts a “Monsoon Wooding” programme and with a target of planting 2,000 new trees each year, the foundation has already planted more than 10,000 trees in and around the capital.

Graviky labs

Air Warrior

The Bengaluru-based lab has been capturing soot from vehicular emissions and use it to extensively to remove heavy metals and carcinogens, before distilling it into this dense black ink. Soot, produced due to the incomplete burning of fossil fuels, easily enters the body’s bloodstream when inhaled at traffic signals, wreaking havoc.

“Air-Ink is formulated by industry standards. We can put it to a range of uses—regular inks, screen painting, newspaper ink, oil-based paints, alcohol-based paints, spray cans, even calligraphy ink,” says Nikhil Kaushik, one of the founders of the company.

Clean Air India Movement (CLAIM)

Air Warrior

CLAIM

Clean Air India Movement (CLAIM) is a nationwide launched campaign launched in May 2015. The campaign is speared by an air purifier company . The Clean Air India Movement is a 360° degree campaign aimed at engaging, encouraging, and educating Indian citizens to adopt air friendly measures in the interest of the country and its children. “Our campaign aim is to tell people that we are not helpless individuals when it comes to challenging air pollution. Even simple acts by individuals or sole companies such as it can make a difference when it comes to showing responsibility and care, which is why we have taken the initiative to make the call and mobilisation for action,” said Kannan .

 

Air purifier popular, choose to pay attention to these 4 indicators

In recent years, the air purifier market demand increased dramatically. In March this year, the formal implementation of new national standard air purifier. The 4 core indicators listed in the new national standard, can make consumers more rational, more intuitive to buy air purifiers. The reporter recently visited the home appliance stores found that many people still do not understand the indicators in the new national standard the significance of the purchase, are often confused.

The air purifier sales hot 

The air purifier sales season in November each year to second years in February. Last month, we store the air purifier sales had exceeded 320 thousand yuan, compared with the same period last year grew by about 10%. Suning Tianyi life appliance sales supervisor Huang Yanfu told reporters, the air purifier sales now account for the store of life general electric 30% sales, the momentum of rapid development.

Every time a small explosion of air pollution, will make the air purifier market ushered in a wave of “outbreak”. “Since 2013, sales of air purifiers showing explosive growth. Especially in 2014, 2015, the average annual growth rate of over the air purifier sales Deputy General Manager 150%. Su ningyun group Limited by Share Ltd in Ningbo area management center Hu Yu told reporters, although just entering the season, but this year he air purifier sales confidence. According to Hu Yu estimates, this year Ningbo air purifier sales reach at least twenty thousand units.

4 indicators to measure product performance

SHARP, Blueair, Olans. ..Today, the market range of air purifier brand many people have no choice. “In fact, no matter what the purification principle, is to detect the air purifier according to the detection method of the same.” Hu Yu told reporters that the measure of an air purifier performance of the 4 core indicators can refer to the new national standard list: clean air volume (hereinafter referred to as Cadr), the cumulative amount of purified (hereinafter referred to as CCM), the purification efficiency and noise.

“Cadr value, clean air volume per unit time through the filter output. In general, the bigger the Cadr value, the purification ability is stronger.” Hu Yu told reporters, usually, the applicable area of clean air available amount multiplied by the coefficient of air purifier (0.07 – 0.12) to estimate. The Cadr value is 400 per hour cubic meters of air purifier for example, its application in the area of 28 square meters to 48 square meters. As for the air purifier to output that can work long, mainly to see the value of CCM. That is to say, the bigger the CCM value, the service life of the screen is longer.

Hu Yu also told reporters that the air purifier mainly relates to particles and formaldehyde two pollutants. If an air purifier is marked with particles of Cadr value, CCM value, Cadr value and marked with formaldehyde, CCM value, indicating that the air purifier can purify particles can also purify formaldehyde.

Purification efficiency and the operation noise of the air purifier, is also an important indicator to measure the performance of the product. “In general, clean energy efficiency rating for air purifier, air purifier is superior to the qualified level.” Hu Yu said that the air purifier is the implementation of noise as low as possible.3 months of the new national standard, the highest air purifier the noise should not exceed 70 dB.

Purchase should be based on their own needs

“After the implementation of new national standards, the core index of air purifier in the packaging or instructions of the conspicuous position marked, consumers should only compare related values, can find a suitable air purifier.” the city Consumer Protection Committee Deputy Secretary General in Leimin told reporters that some business performance in order to more intuitive publicity of air purifier also, the relevant numerical made stickers in the air purifier. An air purifier to determine whether the implementation of the new national standard, standard execution view the product packaging or instructions. If the standard is GB / t18801-2015, is according to the new international standard production.

In addition to the related numerical selection air purifier, consumers can choose according to the different functions of different air purifiers. Young and old groups can choose the air purifier with microorganism removal function, but has the function of air purifiers generally higher prices; if consumers do not want to often replace the filter, can choose CCM value of air purifier is bigger; if consumers use air purifier in a newly renovated room, can choose Cadr value formaldehyde air purifier with formaldehyde high CCM value.

The use of air purifiers, when to replace the filter, is a lot of consumer concerns. The reporter visited found that the current situation of air cleaner production at present most manufacturers can automatically prompt screen. For example, PHILPS air purifier, just change the filter, the air purifier will be displayed on the display of “C7”; when the filter needs to be cleaned, the air purifier will be displayed on the display of “F0”; when the filter needs to be replaced, display the word “A3” is the air purifier on the screen. The current status of air purifier Olans display screen more directly. According to guideintroduction, Olans air purifier filter display the number of days to 0, consumers should replace the filter.

How to buy air purifier? It doesn’t have to be expensive but to choose suitable

A haze into the winter season, masks, air purifiers and other products demand, seems to have become law. And with the heating season, the air quality situation may become more severe. The reporter visited Taiyuan several appliance stores found all kinds of anti haze products ushered in a buying spree.

The influence of air quality, people have taken measures to buy air purification products to deal with. In Taiyuan electrical appliance stores, in order to facilitate the consumers to buy air purifier products are placed in the most prominent position. The new road is located in a home appliance store sales staff told reporters that in recent years, due to the weather, air purifier market is very hot, not only in Taiyuan, many other people in the northern city with purchase intention. “Air purification products for the autumn and winter haze depend more and more intense, dependent on the weather situation is quite obvious.” the sales personnel, recently sold in more than half of small household electrical appliances, air purifier products, some good the brands and models of products are often out of stock, National Day during the purification rate of high net worth of the Gao Jie product sales more than doubled last year.

To reduce pollution, clean air to breathe, anti haze products have become the necessities of daily life of consumers. This year the new national standard in March formally implemented, air purifier products standards become there are rules to follow, the air purification products chaos situation has improved, related products to enter the era of regulation.

However, in the face of the market every kind of products, some consumers are confused at the time of purchase. “When a serious haze days in autumn and winter, my throat is uncomfortable, because it is not good for health, want to buy an air purifier, but to see so many brands, know so much, or don’t know what to do.” Taiyuan “after 50” Ms. Wang Yujing told reporters, according to the purification effect of choice, but many air purifiers hit “high-tech” signs, some marked “formaldehyde removal rate of 99.9%, some marked” Plasmacluster technology “, make a person dazzling, no start.

In this regard, the Shanxi environmental protection industry Wu Hong said that after the introduction of the new national standard air purifier, noise on basic removals, products, energy efficiency and other indicators have made provisions to certain norms of the market. “The new national standard is a qualified line, only to meet the new national standard of products to enter the market now. On the market brand less than before many, so long as in large shopping malls to buy, consumers do not need to worry about quality issues”

For many years engaged in the sales of home appliances industry in Taiyuan Li Yuan suggested that the air purifier type are many, some can sterilization, some in addition to haze, consumers should not blindly buy. Before the purchase, must have a clear purpose, and then targeted to choose their own family products. If the new home repair, you can choose to go to formaldehyde. There are a lot of domestic and imported brands are designed for this. If it is to clean the indoor air, you can choose to clean, good dedusting effect, with the function of sterilization products, many brand products can be intelligent in addition to formaldehyde, haze and pm2.5. “in addition, many doors and windows closed to prevent haze into, in fact does not to prevent air pollution, can reduce the PM2.5 index, but will make the air circulation is not smooth, easy to breed bacteria, and other microorganisms in a confined environment, will cause harm to human health. Therefore, the autumn” Winter haze, the correct method is more important.

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People of the Han Dynasty invented the “air purifier” so long, you have seen?

In winter, the haze is becoming increasingly serious, direct harm to our health. But now developed technology, although the haze problem has not been radical, but we can use anti haze masks outdoors, indoors can purify the air using air purifiers, improve air quality to ensure good health.

Then the problem has come, because the ring (air) (gas) (gas) asked (net) problem (chemical) is not only a problem and demand, so the ancient people in the face of air pollution is how to do it?

As early as 2000 years ago during the Han Dynasty, the wisdom of the Chinese has started the production and use of “air purifier“. So, today we will try to understand the people of the Han Dynasty invented the “air purifiers” look like what, what is the working principle.

Lighting is widely used in the Han Dynasty of the animal fat as fuel, not full combustion of carbon particles and combustion ashes with the hot air flow becomes volatile, leading to indoor smoke. In order not to be choked to death, Han people began to study how to purify the indoor air. Thus, people of the Han Dynasty invented long letter lanterns. Wild fish lamp and lamp set lighting, copper cattle! Invented the three lighting tool is the people of the Han Dynasty the air purification, the aesthetic value of the function of “air purifier”

(gilded bronze figurine with a lamp)

 

(Wild fish lamp )

 

 

 

                                                                                        (Bull lamp )

 

Of course, around the long letter lanterns, lamp and other lamps Yan copper cattle may vary, but generally in the above three, but the work principle of all the same.

 

 

(Schematic diagram of each part of wild fish lamp)

 

 

Long letter lanterns, lamp and lamp adopts the bull goose “water filter smoke” way to purify the air. It is a long letter palace lantern, or wild fish lamp and copper cattle light, all contain at least “lamp, lampshade, lamp holder, flue flue (long letter lanterns in the palace is the right arm, a smoke channel of wild fish lamp as the flue pipe gooseneck, it is between the first cattle and light box), 5 tank”, other three kinds of lamps are constructed with reasonable design, many components can be disassembled, and the lamp shade can be arbitrary direction of rotation, to adjust the brightness and the illumination angle. When the lights lit. Through the smoke flue into the palace, wild goose fish and bull’s body, by water filtration, containing dissolved, so as to keep indoor air fresh, preventing pollution of oil fume on indoor air.

Although the gap between the three “air purifier ” and now really great, but in the Han Dynasty have practical exquisite invention of such a set of environmental protection and the Arts in a is rare, simply called black technology, have to admire the wisdom of the ancients!

 

 

Outdoor air purifier project gathers dust

An outdoor air purifier was installed outside Palika Bazaar in 2010.photo: special arrangement

While the Delhi government is considering installing outdoor air purifiers at traffic intersections, it turns out that the last time the city experimented with such a project, it was left hanging for five years.

The New Delhi Municipal Council had set up an air filtering station in 2010, before the Commonwealth Games.

The purifier was installed outside Palika Bazaar in Connaught Place free of cost by a company called System Life on March 6, 2010. The machine cleaned 10,000 cubic metres of air every hour for about 18 months. The system worked by cleaning polluted air of particulate matter and gases with fabric filters, active carbon cartridges and electrostatic filters.

According to System Life India director Dhruv Chanana, the machine was operational till October 18, 2011, before being removed. “It was removed because no one wanted to accept the need to clean the air,” said Mr. Chanana, adding that had the NDMC gone ahead with more such purifiers, the pollution levels in the area would have reduced. That being said, the authorities have remained mum on the effectiveness of such a project.

Dr. P.K. Sharma, NDMC’s Medical Officer of Health, said it was a pilot project and had not received the necessary approvals to continue. “It was a free demonstration by the company. Before continuing with the project, it required clearance of the Central Pollution Control Board and the Delhi Pollution Control Committee. We are yet to receive that,” said Dr. Sharma.

95% efficiency

The air samples from the trial were analysed by three Italian scientists, including from the University of Modena. Their report was submitted to the NDMC and subsequently to the DPCC.

According to the report, a copy of which is with The Hindu , a total of 2.12 kg of particulate matter had been detained in 860 hours and the filtering efficiency of the system was 95 per cent.

The report concluded that with an “appropriate number of systems” (about 22 for Connaught Place) the air quality of an area could improve.

The DPCC, which works under the Delhi government’s Environment and Forest Department, for its part, did not make any comments on the efficiency of the system, as per a letter sent by one of its scientists to System Life on October 12, 2010. According to the letter, a copy of which is with The Hindu , the DPCC had not commented on the report “as no specific study was undertaken” by it.

Environmentalists, however, used the experience of the NDMC project to question the AAP government’s proposal to install outdoor air purifiers. Anumita Roychowdhury, the head of the Centre for Science and Environment’s air pollution and clean transportation programme, said air purifiers worked within confined environments, “but outdoor air is a complex chemistry with dynamic movement pattern”.

Multi brand air purifier “on the black list”

The winter is coming, haze also changes with the seasons, your home air purifier safety performance? How?

Recently, the National Quality Inspection Bureau, Beijing Consumers Association and other departments concerned about the air purifier product quality performance, quality inspection report released the air purifier and the comparison of the test results. Consumers in the purchase of air purifier, safety performance not only pay attention to the product, to avoid the risk of leakage, but also from the angles of comprehensive consideration of purification efficiency of air purifier, choose their own products. Multi brand products are unsafe household appliances as air purification device, its safety performance must be guaranteed, but the 2016 air purifier national product quality supervision and inspection results of special release in the country General Administration of quality inspection in October 19th showed that many batches of product safety, EMC project failed, to touch the live parts The protection, leakage current and electric strength and working temperature, leakage current and electric project, EMC project unqualified, continuous disturbance voltage of 8 batches of substandard, continuous harassment power of 4 batches of substandard. The unqualified products related to “novowater”, “Yusana”, “sheeraire” seats “” Morrell, moral “,” refinair “,” somputon SIASUN “and other brands.

Similarly, in October 20th, Beijing City Consumers Association released air purifier comparison test results show that the air purifier samples of 50 brands of 50 enterprises in the production or distribution of the 7 samples, there are security risks.

Among them, the brand of” Samsung (Samsung) “model for” air purifier kj250g-k3026pw “(side panel pink)” sign “,” power connection and external flexible cords “project does not meet the national standard. Net U.S. official. The brand product purification efficiency of unqualified consumers in the purchase of air purifiers, are often the most attention. The purification effect of products according to the performance requirements of the national standard gb/t 18801-2015< air purifier “, is from a plurality of index to measure the overall performance. For example, the amount of clean air (called Cadr), purification efficiency, noise, application area, cumulative the amount of purified (CCM) purification, life, standby power, the release amount of harmful substances, removal of microorganisms (bacteria, mildew, bacteria). If these items are not standard, means that the product purification effect on the whole. For example, poor product quality checks the State Quality Inspection Administration issued the results show that the particles of clean air volume 2 batches of substandard particles accumulation amount of purified 1 batches of unqualified, formaldehyde purification efficiency (effectiveness) of 3 batches of substandard, noise of 5 batches of substandard. Among them, the nominal” Beijing net U.S. official Net U.S. official air purifier Environmental Technology Co., Ltd. production (trademark for the “net U.S. official mfresh”, type “m8188a 220V to 50Hz 70W”, “2016-01-25” batch production “) particles clean gas, formaldehyde purification efficiency two project failed. Beijing City Consumers Association released air purifier comparative test results showed that 14 samples did not meet the requirements of the” qualified “purification efficiency level, the brand of” SHARP sharp “, type” kc-w380sw-w “air purifier” formaldehyde purification efficiency “does not meet the standard requirements; sample measurement of noise near 1/5 over express value too much, suspected of misleading consumers.

Air purifiers at traffic intersections: Experts call it mere band-aid fix

In a rather desperate move to counter the severe air pollution in Delhi, the government wants to install air purifiers at traffic intersections. But experts feel the idea is flawed on various counts. While this is more of a band-aid solution that doesn’t bring down vehicular emissions, the system may also not be as effective in “purifying” polluted air.

Each device, it is claimed, helps purify the air of up to 40% pollutants, including particulate matter, carbon monoxide and hydrocarbons, over a 30-metre radius. However, the results when the New Delhi Municipal Council installed a similar air purifier in Connaught Place in 2010 weren’t great, and the machine was soon dismantled.


“It did not prove very effective. You have to understand that the air purifier has to have a huge capacity to be able to filter all the pollution,” an NDMC official told TOI. “We installed it more for demonstration and did not even pay the company then.” He, however, added that NDMC was now thinking of reassessing the effectiveness of the machine because air quality has deteriorated so much.

The air purifiers being currently considered by Delhi government are a bit different. They have been designed by the National Environmental Engineering Research Institute (NEERI) and IIT Mumbai and manufactured by a Kerala-based company. These can filter particulate matter, carbon monoxide and hydrocarbons. The team is working on filtration of oxides of nitrogen (NOx) too, but that may take over a year. Delhi government’s press release on Friday said though that they could monitor NOx as well.

Each purifier costs Rs 1 lakh or so. A busy intersection could require up to five of them, depending on the area being covered. On trial in Mumbai at present, the results could determine whether the Maharashtra government will deploy them in parts of that city. A Maharashtra Pollution Control Board official said the trial for a single installation cost them about Rs 20 lakh.

“The system also creates turbulence that helps pollutants to disperse, which is helpful in Delhi’s calm winter when pollutants tend to remain concentrated near the road surface,” elaborated Rakesh Kumar, director, NEERI. The purifiers run on electricity, but can be operated on solar power too. Each machine being test run in Mumbai costs just around Rs 30 a day. China is planning to operate similar purifiers in some locations on a pilot test.

Experts, however, are not too taken by the idea of using the machines. “Air purifiers are definitely not effective, though virtual chimneys that create turbulence may help a little,” said a scientist at an air pollution monitoring agency.

Another expert, Anumita Roy Chowdhury, head of the clean air campaign at the Centre for Science and Environment, said that the use of machines to purify air at a few traffic intersections was a cosmetic measure at best. “The money could have been used more productively to reduce pollution from different sources,” she said. “We cannot afford to make expensive mistakes.”