Environmental tech company Plume Labs has announced availability of Flow, its portable air quality tracker.
We assume that exercise is good for us but this may not always be the case, particularly if you live in a large city. The current crop of fitness trackers monitors everything from steps to heart rate but if the results of a recent study are anything to go by, it might be better if they monitored air pollution levels instead. Some 40% of Americans are exposed to excessive smog levels, while in Europe unclean air causes 500,000 premature deaths every year.
Enter Flow, a small device that monitors the full spectrum of pollutants indoors and out. This includes PM2.5 (particulate matter and dust), NOx (exhaust fumes), Ozone (irritating gas), VOCs (household chemicals), temperature and humidity.
Essential reading: Improve the air in your home with these smart gadgets
Use the accompanying leather strap to attach it onto your bag and let it warn you whenever you are breathing in unhealthy air. Users can then learn how to avoid exposure while mapping their city to find clean air hotspots. You can also share the air quality data you collect to help others avoid polluted areas.
“Over the past three years, we have been perfecting Flow’s custom sensing technologies and
environmental AI in partnership with renowned environmental researchers from institutions such as Imperial College London and France’s CNRS-LISA, to build the most comprehensive personal air quality tracking technology on the market,” says David Lissmyr, CTO and Founder of Plume Labs.
Flow has been thoroughly beta tested as part of an experiment with environmental scientists at Imperial College London. A group of 100 volunteers used the device for 3 months and helped map 1,300 miles of sidewalks in the inner London area. This shows that a small group of people powered by technology can map out a large urban area relatively quickly.
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