Forum for Science, Industry and Business

Sponsored by:     3M 
Search our Site:

 

On-Board School Bus Filtration System Reduces Pollutants by 88 Percent

03.03.2015

System could protect children from harmful exposures

An on-board air filtration system developed specifically for school buses reduces exposure to vehicular pollutants by up to 88 percent, according to a study by researchers at the UCLA Fielding School of Public Health.


UCLA

The HECA school bus air filtration system

The high-efficiency cabin air, or HECA, system could help protect the 25 million American children who commute on school buses nearly every day. Children are more susceptible to air pollution than adults because they breathe more quickly and their immune and cardiovascular systems are still developing, said Yifang Zhu, the study’s senior author and an associate professor in the department of environmental health sciences.

Pollution reduction was even greater under freeway driving conditions, which was surprising because freeways have particularly high pollutant concentrations due to traffic congestion and increased emissions. The study found that the air inside buses with the HECA system was as clean as air near the beach in Santa Monica, California.

The study appears today in the early online edition of the peer-reviewed journal Environmental Science and Technology.

“During school bus commuting, children can be exposed to significantly greater levels of air pollutants than a typical resident in the South Coast air basin,” Zhu said. “Studies have shown that exposure to high levels of vehicle pollution is associated with pulmonary and cardiovascular health risks, including oxidative stress, mitochondrial damage and acute pulmonary inflammation.”

Studies have also found that children exposed to pollutants from vehicles tend to perform less well in school.

The new study tested six school buses without children on board while the buses were still, and while they were driving on freeways and major arterial roadways in Los Angeles. Researchers tested the air both inside and outside of the buses for vehicle-emitted particulate matter, including black carbon and fine and ultrafine particles, down to a few nanometers in size.

A study funded by the California Air Resources Board more than a decade ago was the first to find serious air quality problems inside diesel-powered school buses. That study led to efforts to retrofit school buses with exterior pollution-reducing devices. While that method is promising for minimizing emissions from buses’ tailpipes, it doesn’t always provide cleaner air inside the buses. A majority of school buses today are not equipped with any interior mechanical filtration systems, said Eon Lee, the study’s first author and a postdoctoral researcher in Zhu’s lab.

A previous study by Zhu and her team found that commercially available household air purifiers can reduce pollutant levels inside school buses by about 50 percent. However, they are not designed to work in moving vehicles.

As part of the new study, researchers developed a prototype on-board HECA filtration system for buses and installed two in the rear of each of the six buses tested. Air was drawn in through diffusers on the sides of each unit and fed through the HECA filter. The filtered air was then delivered at a constant rate through air ducts.

“School buses are by far the safest way to transport children between school and home,” Zhu said. “Our goal is to make it also the cleanest way.”

A long-term follow-up study will evaluate how much exposure can be reduced by operating the HECA filtration system in a large number of school buses with children aboard, Zhu said.

“The developed HECA filtration system has great potential to substantially reduce children’s exposure to vehicle pollutants while commuting inside school buses,” the study states.

The study was funded by the California Air Resources Board. The HECA filtration system was developed in collaboration with IQAir North America.

The UCLA Fielding School of Public Health, founded in 1961, is dedicated to enhancing the public's health by conducting innovative research, training future leaders and health professionals from diverse backgrounds, translating research into policy and practice, and serving our local communities and the communities of the nation and the world. The school has 600 students from more than 35 nations engaged in carrying out the vision of building healthy futures in greater Los Angeles, California, the nation and the world.

Contact Information
Kim Irwin
Senior Media Relations Officer
kirwin@mednet.ucla.edu
Phone: 310-794-2262
Mobile: 310-435-9457

Kim Irwin | newswise
Further information:
http://www.newsroom.ucla.edu/

More articles from Ecology, The Environment and Conservation:

nachricht 100 % Organic Farming in Bhutan – a Realistic Target?
15.06.2018 | Humboldt-Universität zu Berlin

nachricht What the size distribution of organisms tells us about the energetic efficiency of a lake
05.06.2018 | Leibniz-Institut für Gewässerökologie und Binnenfischerei (IGB)

All articles from Ecology, The Environment and Conservation >>>

The most recent press releases about innovation >>>

Die letzten 5 Focus-News des innovations-reports im Überblick:

Im Focus: AchemAsia 2019 will take place in Shanghai

Moving into its fourth decade, AchemAsia is setting out for new horizons: The International Expo and Innovation Forum for Sustainable Chemical Production will take place from 21-23 May 2019 in Shanghai, China. With an updated event profile, the eleventh edition focusses on topics that are especially relevant for the Chinese process industry, putting a strong emphasis on sustainability and innovation.

Founded in 1989 as a spin-off of ACHEMA to cater to the needs of China’s then developing industry, AchemAsia has since grown into a platform where the latest...

Im Focus: First real-time test of Li-Fi utilization for the industrial Internet of Things

The BMBF-funded OWICELLS project was successfully completed with a final presentation at the BMW plant in Munich. The presentation demonstrated a Li-Fi communication with a mobile robot, while the robot carried out usual production processes (welding, moving and testing parts) in a 5x5m² production cell. The robust, optical wireless transmission is based on spatial diversity; in other words, data is sent and received simultaneously by several LEDs and several photodiodes. The system can transmit data at more than 100 Mbit/s and five milliseconds latency.

Modern production technologies in the automobile industry must become more flexible in order to fulfil individual customer requirements.

Im Focus: Sharp images with flexible fibers

An international team of scientists has discovered a new way to transfer image information through multimodal fibers with almost no distortion - even if the fiber is bent. The results of the study, to which scientist from the Leibniz-Institute of Photonic Technology Jena (Leibniz IPHT) contributed, were published on 6thJune in the highly-cited journal Physical Review Letters.

Endoscopes allow doctors to see into a patient’s body like through a keyhole. Typically, the images are transmitted via a bundle of several hundreds of optical...

Im Focus: Photoexcited graphene puzzle solved

A boost for graphene-based light detectors

Light detection and control lies at the heart of many modern device applications, such as smartphone cameras. Using graphene as a light-sensitive material for...

Im Focus: Water is not the same as water

Water molecules exist in two different forms with almost identical physical properties. For the first time, researchers have succeeded in separating the two forms to show that they can exhibit different chemical reactivities. These results were reported by researchers from the University of Basel and their colleagues in Hamburg in the scientific journal Nature Communications.

From a chemical perspective, water is a molecule in which a single oxygen atom is linked to two hydrogen atoms. It is less well known that water exists in two...

All Focus news of the innovation-report >>>

Anzeige

Anzeige

VideoLinks
Industry & Economy
Event News

Munich conference on asteroid detection, tracking and defense

13.06.2018 | Event News

2nd International Baltic Earth Conference in Denmark: “The Baltic Sea region in Transition”

08.06.2018 | Event News

ISEKI_Food 2018: Conference with Holistic View of Food Production

05.06.2018 | Event News

 
Latest News

Novel method for investigating pore geometry in rocks

18.06.2018 | Earth Sciences

Diamond watch components

18.06.2018 | Process Engineering

New type of photosynthesis discovered

18.06.2018 | Life Sciences

VideoLinks
Science & Research
Overview of more VideoLinks >>>