Plant-filled walls actively degrading air pollutants

Every year, air pollution causes about 4.2 million premature deaths largely due to increased mortality from stroke, heart disease, lung cancer and acute respiratory infections. The ESA-backed Biofiltration of air via living walls project aims to improve indoor air quality by integrating an active air filtration system in a plant-filled building wall.

Source: WHO

The Nedlaw Living Walls Biofilter was the result of approximately 20 years of research at the University of Guelph. This research started at the Canada Life Environmental Room at the Toronto head office of the Canada Life Assurance. The biofilter appears to be a vertical hydroponic wall with a wide range of tropical foliage. The plant-filled wall is actually a mechanical system integrated into the air control system for the building. Air is actively forced through the wall, where air pollutants like formaldehyde and benzene are biologically degraded into their benign constituents of water and carbon dioxide. The clean air is then distributed throughout the space.

Air pollution
Biofiltration of air via living walls
Technology Transfer
Christophe Lasseur
University of Guelph