Pollution Kills

2018

An air-filtering jacket that empowers individuals to take control of the air they breathe as a response to government inaction on air quality.

Fashion Design, Mechanical Engineering

Awards
Creative Conscience Highly Commended (2020)
Imperial College London DESIRE Award (2018)
Exhibitions
Dyson School of Design Engineering,
Open House 2019
London has the highest levels of pollution in the UK, killing almost 9,500 people annually and disproportionately affecting the most vulnerable in society. Pollution Kills is an air-filtering jacket that acts as a public statement to take control of the quality of the air we breathe, where government has failed to do so. Through a system of embedded filtration channels on the inside of the jacket, the jacket discretely filters air pollution and provides a constant flow of fresh air, eliminating the need for obstructive masks and enabling access to clean air.
Design Process
Air pollution is a systemic problem; however, the UK government has consistently failed to meet its targets. As a result, London has the highest levels of pollution in the UK, killing almost 9,500 people annually and disproportionately affecting the most vulnerable in society. Existing solutions have primarily focused on environmental monitoring or macro-filtration, with few focusing on individual health outcomes.

A human-centred design approach highlighted a western stigma of face concealment as a key insight into why people were hesitant to wear masks, even if they understood the harmful effects of air pollution and the efficacy of masks. Existing solutions to reduce this stigma have focused on integrating or decorating masks, but this is ineffective because masks are inherently obvious. Therefore, this project sought to create a discrete air filtering system that benefits the wearer.

Through technical prototyping and aesthetic development, Pollution Kills emerged as a solution that uses fluid mechanics principles to deliver clean air. Filtration channels integrated into the jacket's interior take in the surrounding polluted air from the bottom and produce clean air from the top. A negative pressure micro-fan system passes air through a dual-filter arrangement to provide sufficient airflow for comfortable breathing.

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