Developing self-cleaning and pollution absorbing materials

Innovative construction materials that are self-cleaning and depolluting are being tested and developed by the EC Joint Research Centre (JRC) as part of the PICADA (Photo-catalytic Innovative Coverings Applications for De-pollution Assessment) project.

The PICADA project is going ahead within the scope of the European programme called Competitive and Sustainable Growth. It started on the 1st of January 2002 and will end in 2005. The main project objectives are:

  • A better understanding of the processes and chemical mechanisms
  • The development of application methods to optimize material efficiency
  • Assessment of the cost and durability of the coverings
  • Validation through a complete real-scale study of results coming from laboratories and micro-scale models
  • Product development and marketing

These construction materials include paints, plaster, mortar, architectural concrete and coatings containing titanium dioxide that can capture and absorb organic and inorganic air pollutants after being exposed to sun-light. The air pollutants are chemically altered into harmless components and then washed away by rainwater.

Source: Picada Project

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