Clean air is beneficial for health, and also good sleep. But do you know the quality of the air around you?
This latest Finnish development could help you answer that question: by using infrared spectrometry to measure the concentration of carbon dioxide in the air, a smartphone add-on can tell you whether the air around you has good, or bad, quality. This kind of measurements can help you to initiate clean air initiatives in your office, city, or even in your home.
The cheapest way to clean up bad air? Well, there are several alternatives. You could invest in an air filter system. Or you could invest in plants. There's a wonderful combination of five plants that NASA uses in its sealed biospheres because they are so very efficient at cleaning up air. Of those five, three have been demonstrated to be sufficient to meet the clean air demands of a single person:
– Areca Palm (Chrysalidocarpus Lutescens)
– Mother-In-Law Tongue (Sansevieria trifasciata)
– Money tree (Epipremnum aureum)
And in case you, like me, have a brown thumb, a word of advice: the first two plants need regular care. But do consider the money tree. It's not as efficient as the areca palm at turning carbon dioxide into oxygen, but binds poisonous particulates. It thrives pretty much everywhere (even in constant shade), can survive up to two months without water and requires close to no nutrients. The only real work for you: You'll need to tie it up every now and then so that it doesn't overrun your house!
A miniature gas sensor for mobile devices
VTT Technical Research Centre of Finland has developed a miniature gas sensor that can be connected to mobile devices. Gas measurements made with smartphones will make activities such as the detection of internal air problems easier. In addition, sleep quality will be measurable with greater precision, using mobile healthcare applications which gauge carbon dioxide quantities.