Stockholm, 24 May 2022 – A road test recently published by Society of Automotive Engineers (SAE) International confirms that CabinAir’s Nordzone™ System removes up to 97% of PM₂.₅ compared to 17–50% removal by standard filters in the vehicles tested. The study also verifies that the Nordzone™ System achieves those results in fresh air mode, which prevents the build-up of drowsiness-causing carbon dioxide.
Tsinghua University, which is ranked in the top 20 globally, carried out a series of dynamic vehicle tests between May and July 2020 in Beijing, in collaboration with CabinAir. The results were published in SAE International in April 2022. The test vehicles were standard vehicles used by volunteer drivers who habitually drove between their homes and offices.
The results confirm CabinAir’s own tests, which show that existing filters used for more than three months cannot protect drivers and passengers from outdoor PM pollution, except by using recirculation mode. Using recirculation mode results in a rapid increase in the level of CO₂ in the cabin from the exhaled breath of the driver and passengers. Now endorsed by SAE International, the study has been made available to 128,000 engineers and related technical experts in the aerospace, automotive and commercial vehicle industries.
In the study we can see that:
- Combining cabin air filters with recirculation mode is a commonly used technique for lowering in-cabin particulate levels. However, this method can quickly expose the drivers and passengers to high levels of CO₂ which can cause driver fatigue, a potential safety risk on roads. It’s highly recommended to combine in-cabin CO₂ measurement with particle measurements when evaluating in-cabin air quality
- Fresh air mode prevents the built-up of interior CO₂. However, drivers can be exposed to a high level of PM₂.₅ concentrations, even with cabin air filters installed.
- By combining ionization technology with an optimized filter, as in the Nordzone™ System, particle filtration efficiency increases to up to 97% in fresh air mode, without the safety risks from CO₂ build up.
Fresh, Swedish forest air – in your car
CabinAir’s two-stage air purification solution for vehicles combines the effect of particle charging technology with an optimized mechanical filter. The particle charging device gives airborne particles an electrical charge as they enter the system, making them “stickier,” so they get trapped in the filter much more effectively.
“Whether you are in a car, truck or bus, we believe the air you breathe inside your car should be as fresh and clean as you’d find in a Swedish forest.” says Daniel Hagström, co-founder and CabinAir CEO.
Not only is CabinAir’s two-stage combination up to ten times more effective than a conventional, filter-only solution, it’s especially effective against the very small and ultrafine particles that are most harmful to health. It’s also highly effective at removing pollen and soot, which have a direct, noticeable effect on breathing.
“And unlike traditional systems that rely on recirculating increasingly stale interior air, the Nordzone™ System traps the smallest, most harmful airborne pollutants, including ultra-fine particles, before they can get to you,” Hagström continues. “So, you don’t have to rely on recirculating the air to reach acceptable low PM levels inside the cabin. The constant flow of fresh and clean air also works against spread of airborne virus and bacteria and prevents CO₂ build up which can cause drowsiness.”
CO₂ monitoring: a benchmark for in-cabin air quality
Hagström explains that understanding the trade-off between fresh air and recirculated air is important when it comes to the total system. Under recirculation mode, some filters can achieve high levels of PM₂.₅ removal. However, that comes at a cost of a rapid build-up of a high level of CO₂, which causes drowsiness and a safety risk on roads.
“The test report confirms that it is highly recommended to combine in-cabin CO₂ measurement and particle measurement, for a more holistic approach to healthy in-cabin air, Hagström continues.
The Nordzone™ System is part of CabinAir’s Connected Health Zone System, which is a CES® 2022 Innovation Awards honoree for outstanding design and engineering. “We recommend installing the Nordzone™ System as part of our award-winning Connected Health Zone System, which includes sensors for both PM and carbon dioxide,” Hagström says. “You can see if CO₂ levels are building up, and the readings also show how clean the air is.”
“This lets you get an idea of whether airborne viruses are building up, which they tend to do in recirculated air. The continuous flow of purified outside air using our system prevents virus levels from building up.”
Proven in Volvo cars
CabinAir technology is already on the road in Volvo Cars, some of the world’s most highly regarded vehicles in terms of driver and passenger health and safety. “Our technology is already an integral part of Volvo Cars’ Advanced Air Cleaner (AAC) system,” Hagström says.
“And now, with our aftermarket Nordzone™ System, we’re making healthy air available to the billion vehicles already on the roads, including buses, trucks and other vehicles. Whether they are integrated at the factory or are replacing a standard cabin air filter, our solutions turn vehicles into powerful air purifiers. They also process air quality data to guide and navigate drivers and passengers to healthy air in all traffic situations.”
CabinAir Connected Health Zone System for Vehicles was recently also named Automotive News PACE Award 2022 finalist.
About SAE International
SAE International (Society of Automotive Engineers) is a global association of more than 128,000 engineers and related technical experts in aerospace, automotive and commercial-vehicle industries. Its core competencies are life-long learning and voluntary consensus standards development.
SAE MOBILUS is a platform that includes quality standards, innovative technical research, and industry-leading transportation engineering resources through highly targeted search features and a user-focused interface. SAE Technical Papers, available on the SAE MOBILUS platform, are written and peer-reviewed by experts in the automotive, aerospace, and commercial vehicle industries. Members can learn from 102,000 technical papers and journal articles on the latest advances in technical research and applied technical engineering information below.
About Tsinghua University
As one of China's most prestigious and influential universities, Tsinghua is committed to cultivating global citizens who will thrive in today's world and become tomorrow's leaders. Through the pursuit of education and research at the highest level of excellence, Tsinghua is developing innovative solutions that will help solve pressing problems in the world. Tsinghua University is ranked 16th best university in the world in by the Times Higher Education World University Rankings.
CabinAir aims to improve the health, safety and wellbeing of drivers and passengers, by producing industry leading in-cabin air purification solutions for cars, trucks, buses and other vehicles.
CabinAir was established in 2016 as a subsidiary of Blueair, one of the world’s leading producers of air purification solutions for home and professional use. Based in Stockholm we are now an international fast expanding team of passionate and committed employees with factory and R&D in Shenzhen and sales offices in Shanghai and Los Angeles.
*The SAE Publication can be found at this link (paywall) https://www.sae.org/publications/technical-papers/content/02-15-04-0020/
Marketing Manager CabinAir
M: +46 (0)70 366 50 48
CabinAir Sweden AB, Oxenstiernsgatan 15A, 115 27 Stockholm, Sweden