Monday, July 30, 2012

HVAC Air Intake Covered in Plants - Green Roofs and Living Walls Filtering Air Flow

Newton, the Ask a Scientist, Scientist - available for consultation from the U.S. Government - click here for Newton's Website... - 

...says 53 Liters is the amount of pure Oxygen the average adult needs to survive every hour.  53 liters is approximately 14 gallons.

You can see we use alot of oxygen on a regular basis.  Now picture your bedroom and night or your office during the day.  For estimation purposes we will use an office space of about 5,000 SF with a 9' ceiling and containing 24 employees.  The Office contains  336,600 gallons of atmosphere.

Green Roof Plants filter toxins and produce oxygen

According to Newton the air we breathe contains about 21% oxygen so the office will contain 70,686 gallons of oxygen.  Is this enough to last the 24 employees for a day?  Let's find out.

Each employee breathes 14 gallons of pure oxygen per hour - more if they are active but most office workers are sedentary - so each employee breathes in120 gallons per shift and the office as a whole breathes in 2,880 gallons of oxygen per shift. 

OK - that's plenty of oxygen to start, but within a month without the doors and windows being opened the employees will rapidly use up all the oxygen.  How old is your office?  How old is your house?  When is the last time you've flushed the air in your office or house?

Just think, without the windows being open, you are breathing stale air - air already breathed in many times over by others in your office or house.  This air contains not only stale exhale of others (and suspended germs) but volatile toxins off-gassing from carpet, furniture, paint and other manufactured goods in the office or house.

And the unfortunate part of the whole equation is - we keep our windows shut most of the time.

However, there is a solution - plants!  Plants produce oxygen as a by-product of photosynthesis.  Your personal oxygen machine is as readily available to you as setting a plant on your desk.

I suspect all employees would be happier if air intakes for HVAC systems (most residential systems are closed loop systems) were covered with vines and pumped full of oxygen.

Moreover, plants are extremely efficient at removing toxins from the off-gassing process.

Green roofs and living walls are a key component to filling our sometimes stale Urban Core with fresh oxygen.  Imagine buildings downtown covered in plants and those plants pumping out oxygen daily.

The roof-based vegetated air intake tunnel keeps a building roof vegetated and provides additional benefits, including;

1.  Cools intake air
2.  Shades the roof
3.  Removes airborne toxins, and more!

MetroVerde Intake Tunnel Alternative to Green Roof 

Additional benefits allow for reducing heat island effect, providing shade, cleaning stormwater, wildlife habitat and much more.

Restoring volumetric green to the Urban Core.

Green Roofs are the key to healthy cities.

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