The scientists discovered that by lining the streets with paving blocks covered in titanium oxide, otherwise known as photocatalytic pavement, they can remove particulate matter from the air and lessen its harmful effects. The findings were published in the Journal of Hazardous Materials.
A normal city street was used as a control, and after taking measurements for an entire year, scientists discovered that photocatalytic pavement decreased nitrogen oxide air pollution by 45% in ideal weather conditions. Over the course of an entire day, the nitrogen oxide air pollution was decreased 19%.
Nitrogen oxides are extremely dangerous poisonous gases that power plants and cars produce. They form smog by reacting with other compounds in the atmosphere.
Scientists are excited about the photocatalytic pavement results and can envision using the material to reduce air pollution from traffic emissions in cities across the globe.