Global Technical function: Filtrating, Purifying, Separating
Technical Function Unit: Data analysing, Mechanical separating, Physical filtrating
Geographic Area: Taiwan

EcoFan Air Filter, Taiwan

For past few years, air pollutant has been a big challenge for urban cities due to its direct effect on both human health and the environment. A novel device called EcoFan Air Filter is proposed to help diminish such a deadly crisis.

The challenge

Various things are floating around in the air, many of which are invisible and might be a kind of air pollution called particles or particulate matter.  WHO announced that as a growing number of urban cities worldwide enveloped in dirty air and suffering from health risks caused by air pollution, which jeopardizes children and the elderly in particular, it has estimated in April 2014 that air pollution was responsible for the deaths of 3.7 million people under the age of 60 in 2012, and indoor and outdoor air pollution are combined to be one of the largest risks to healthy worldwide.

It is known that there are many components of air pollution, both gaseous and solid, but especially high concentrations of small and fine particulate pollution is associated with high numbers of deaths from heart disease and stroke, as well as respiratory illnesses and cancers. Measurement of fine particulate matter of 2.5 micrometres or less in diameter (PM2.5), therefore, is considered to be the crucial indicator of the level of health risks from air pollution. It is frustrating for common citizens to lower the level of PM2.5 outdoors, but it seems reachable to enhance the indoor level.

The innovation

Prior to the proper measures taken by the local government to overcome PM2.5, it seems to be much safer to stay indoors as much as possible. Therefore, a state-of-the-art innovative gadget - EcoFan Air Filter, manufactured by GE Technology, Taiwan, has been rolled out in 2015 to mitigate the negative effects of worsen air. Electric fans are easily seen in almost every family in Asia, so GE Technology utilises their ubiquity, inventing a piece of cloth to cover on them. Such a simple procedure and the ingenuity contributes to numerous advantages, like maintaining good indoor air quality efficiently and effectively, functioning the filtration of Haze and PM2.5 efficiently and effectively, removing odour with activated carbon impregnated, and reducing anti-microorganisms such as bacteria, fungi, mildew, dust mite, etc. For consumers, to make do with existed fans is economical to obtain clear air indoors at one third to one fifth cost in lieu of high-end, bulky and redundant air purifiers.

Why did it work?

To meet different application requirements, this filter comes with many different mechanical separating configurations as follows: 

  1. It is configured to effectively remove PM2.5 particulate at high air permeability;
  2. It is combined with activated carbon to remove bad odours along with PM2.5 - also at high air permeability; 3)Antimicrobial property is included as an added function - rated at 99.9% reduction for bacteria and fungi.

As proved by data analysing, it can effectively reduce bacteria and fungi within 30 minutes at 2.0 m/s in circulation operation, and consumers can get more bang for their buck.

Further deployment

The EcoFan Air Purifier can be applied in various places. By means of such separating and physical filtrating, PM 2.5 can be reduced by >95% in 30 minutes in bedrooms, 92.8% particulate reduction in offices, 80% particulate reduction in schools. The EcoFan Air Purifier is not confined to air purifying, and sterilization performance also catches consumers' eyes. As examined in hospitals, the removal of smaller bacteria (with highest infection risk i.e. <2.1 microns in size) was 96.8% in 30 minutes.

All achievement proved an encouraging performance, and the maturity level is estimated to be 9 on the TRL scale. For recent years, low-and middle-income countries are bearing the brunt of the death toll attributed to dire PM2.5, so the EcoFan Air has started to take a stab at international markets. The contraption sold at such reasonable selling prices (e.g. price for 16" Air Filter “PM2.5 + Activated Carbon for Odour Reduction” is USD40/pc) won't burden the people in developing countries, saying nothing of electric fans are accessible in those countries, and the deployment is expected to go very well.