Algae building cladding can absorb pollutants from the atmosphere

Ecologic Studio has created a building cladding made up of algae that has the ability to turn buildings into air pollution filters.

Called Photo.Synth.Etica, the bio-digital cladding is created with micro-algae which can capture solar radiation and absorb CO2 and air pollution from the atmosphere ten times more effectively than trees.

Every two square meters of the cladding can absorb, on average, the same amount of CO2 as a fully grown tree, which is roughly 22kg of carbon a year.

Unfiltered urban air enters the bottom of the cladding and as the air bubbles naturally rise through the watery medium within the cladding panels, they come into contact with the algae microbes.

The CO2 molecules and the other air pollutants are then captured and stored by the algae, this then allows the algae to grow into a usable material in the form of biomass.

This biomass can be easily harvested and sold on for the creation of other products such as,  bioplastic raw materials, biofuels or fertilizers.

In the final stage of the process, the freshly photosynthesized oxygen is released out of the top of the cladding, successfully pumping out clean air into the urban atmosphere or the building interior.

According to Ecologic Studio, the cladding has the ability to successfully turn buildings into bio-power plants which act as carbon sinks and air pollution filters.

The founding partners Claudia Pasquesro and Marco Poletto have said that Photo. Synth. Etica is a new opportunity for future company’s and organisations to reach sustainability goals, while also contributing to citizen’s well-being by drastically reducing the impact of air pollution in the urban area.

The partners hope that this cladding will enable building managers and local community groups to introduce new buildings which will accelerate the creation of green cities.

In related news, scientists in Bristol are developing a ‘revolutionary’ new type of intelligent building that incorporates living fungi to react with changes in air pollutants, light and temperature.

Photo Credit – Pixabay


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