24 January 2012

The ANDREA Air Purifier: A Cool Green Device

It must be noted that this post is not endorsed, approved nor solicited by the makers of ANDREA Air Purifiers.

I just think it's a really cool device. But in terms of function, I don't think this one really works well. In theory it would seem so but in actual use, I have read reports that it doesn't. But that being said, I want to clarify that I still like the concept and the look of it and would not hesitate to get one given the opportunity.

House plants, aside from bringing aesthetic beauty to a home also has beneficial use. They also purify and renew stale indoor air by converting carbon dioxide to oxygen as well as trap pollutants from the surroundings.

Plants can be considered as nature’s air filtration system for the earth.

In 2007, as part of an art and science experiment, French designer Mathieu Lehanneur with Harvard professor David Edwards invented the ANDREA: Plant-based Air Purifier.

ANDREA is an air purifier designed to maximize and enhance a plant's natural absorptive property in absorbing toxic gases, such as formaldehyde and other pollutants in the home and office environment.

For more than 30 years, scientists have been researching into how to improve a plant's capability to naturally clean the air of harmful pollutants. The ANDREA Air Purifier advances on these efforts by constructing a device to house the plant that will aid in continuously drawing polluted air from the environment and passing it across living surfaces that absorb and metabolize gaseous pollutants. The biochemical transformation of waste, through the plant’s natural metabolic activity, eliminates the pollution beyond simply collecting it on filter surfaces.

Video: Andrea Air Filter

ANDREA employs both active plant filtration, along with water and soil to provide a multistage system that cleanses air from harmful toxins that can irritate and be harmful to your lungs.

It naturally purifies air by drawing it with a fan to propel it through the leaves and root system of a plant, then out through water and soil filtration and back into the room environment.

There are reports though that the fan starts to get loud after a year of operation and issues of molds and mildew (which may be due to the choice of plants?) hasn't been addressed.

Consumer Reports, an impartial organization that rates devices state that the ANDREA Air Purifier "... won't help remove dust, pollen, or smoke". Nevertheless, it does look like a real cool device and I won't hesitate having it in my home (if i could afford it).

Product Info from the website state:
The ANDREA Air Purifier is a revolutionary new air cleaner engineered to significantly improve the air filtration capacity of natural plants. This living filter accelerates room pollutants through the active infrastructure system of a plant to continuously clean and oxygenate the rooms in your home. Based on experiments performed by RTP Labs, Andrea improves the efficiency of formaldehyde removal from the air relative to plants alone by 360%. Relative to HEPA and carbon filters, comparison between the RTP Labs data and literature data show an improvement in formaldehyde filtration efficiency of 4400%. These data confirm that while plants alone in an interior setting are more efficient than HEPA and carbon filters at removing toxic gases from the air, they are significantly less efficient than Andrea. Even more important, the rate of gas removal by Andrea is, according to the RTP Labs data, over 1000% faster than for plants alone. That is, Andrea dramatically accelerates the efficiency of air cleaning relative to plants alone

Video: Mathieu Lehanneur Inventor of ANDREA


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