India, the world’s most populous country, also has some of the worst air pollution anywhere. By most measures, the air in New Delhi, with a metro population of 32,000,000, is some of the worst of any country on earth.
Many things will need to change for New Delhi residents to start breathing clean air again, including a shift to renewable energy, adoption of EVs and electric mopeds, and industrial changes to clean up factories.
One unique design-centric solution is taking the shape in the form of a sculptural tower, dubbed Verto, which acts as a vacuum cleaner, sucking in polluted air, and scrubbing it. The 5.5-meter-tall (18-foot) tower is still in prototype mode, but was installed at New Delhi’s Sunder Nursery, filtering 600,000 cubic meters of air a day. That is the volume equivalent of 273 hot air balloons. The filters work at around 75 decibels, equivalent to the noise from a kitchen blender. As anyone that’s been to India knows, the large cities are very noisy, so we don’t see this adding too much to the soundscape.
By reducing levels of nitrogen dioxide and dangerous fine particles, the Verto tower showcases how it can elegantly serve as an air cleaning device, while also enhancing the visual beauty of the landscape. We can imagine hundreds or even thousands of these throughout the metropolis, helping to clean the air in busy public places.
Designed by Studio Symbiosis, the towers are attracting attention of people throughout the world, including potential use at industrial sites and similar places.
Using 5 stacked filters from German firm Mann+Hummel, the architectural tower was designed to pull in air as efficiently as possible, cleaning a radius of 100 to 350 meters (328 to 1,148 feet), depending on wind speed and surroundings conditions.
Now that the prototype has been installed and tested, the company hopes to start created the Verto towers in larger quantities, using a design-centric solution.
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