Our recent work titled as “The behaviour of traffic produced nanoparticles in a car cabin and resulting exposure rates” was recently published in Elsevier journal Atmospheric Environment. This research work highlighted the fact that when you are driving your car from your office to home at a typical urban route, the exposure to tiny sized (less than 100 nm in diameter) nanoparticles inside your car cabin can be several times higher than the exposure during cycling or walking along the road sides on the same route.

Double dilemma – Having better filtration system, which is normally available in new cars, can reduce ingress of nanoparticles into the car cabin. At traffic lights or very close to the tailpipe of the vehicle ahead, air taken from outside is much more polluted than inside and can still increase the concentrations to notable levels despite going through filters. Conversely, limiting ventilation to restrict the uptake of outside air into the cabin can lead to excessive CO2 and heat accumulation – again, not good for health!

This full article can be accessed by clicking here to learn more about the outcome of this research study.

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Road vehicles are known to be the largest contributor to the airborne nanoparticles in polluted urban environments. The heavy duty vehicles (HDV; i.e. truck, diesel buses) are known to be the largest contributor of airborne nanoparticles among road vehicles. Other on-vehicle sources of nanoparticles have not got much attention, but our recent work titled as “Nanoparticle emissions from 11 non-vehicle exhaust sources” published in Elsevier journal Atmospheric Environment and highlighted some interesting stats with respect to sources around us. For instance, each km of distance driven by a HDV produce of the order of 1000 billion (~1015) nanoparticles. One kg of fast wood burning produces nearly the same number of particles as for each km driven by a heavy duty vehicle. About 1 min of cooking on gas can produce the similar particle numbers generated by ~10 min of cigarette smoking or 1 m travel by a HDV.”

This full article can be accessed by clicking here to know more about other potential sources of nanoparticles and their dispersion, related exposure and health impacts, as well as state of current policies, guidelines and technical challenges to regulate them.

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We all have seen various structures around us deteriorating because of several reasons. Air pollution, which is known to affect the human health, also play a crucial role in affecting the health of various materials used in buildings and transport infrastructure. Our recent article titled as “Footprints of air pollution and changing environment on the sustainability of built infrastructure” appeared recently in the Elsevier Journal Science of the Total Environment. This highlights the novel links between these cross-disciplinary topics and propose the way forward for mapping the corrosion in an area. The full article can be accessed by clicking here.

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This blog was originally posted on the 3ksan.org website.

Last month it was announced that we have met the UN Millennium Development Goal for water, with over 2 billion people having gained access to drinking-water since 1990. But do these people really have access to safe water, and for how long with these systems last? Continue reading »

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“Anti–pollution clothing invented” – this was one of the news headlines a few days ago. Well, this is another gift from the emergence of nanotechnology. According to the inventors, “any item of clothing could be treated, but in order for the technology to work you need light. So, for example, you wouldn’t want to coat your underpants”.  Simple but interesting estimates proposed were that if all the 10 million people living in London take one gram of coating out, this would consume 10 ten tons of nitrous oxide in London every day.

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