Hot Summer Raises Ozone Concerns
ISELIN, NJ, August 20, 2007 – A sizzling summer is raising concerns about air quality in the US and Europe. These high temperatures could lead to higher levels of ground-level ozone, one of the air pollutants of concern in urban areas. Unique technology from BASF Catalysts, currently in use on some vehicles in the US, can help combat this harmful pollutant by destroying ozone already in the air.
In the US, weather forecasters at the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration predict that average temperatures will remain above normal through September. Likewise, southern Europe is experiencing record-breaking, triple-digit temperatures and Meteorological experts at the UK’s Meteorological Service say there is a “high probability” that this summer will exceed long-term averages, and they say it is possible the summer of 2007 could be the warmest year on record.
Ground-level ozone, the main component of smog, is produced when sunlight reacts with emissions from mobile and stationary sources such as cars, trucks, power plants, small engines, parking garages, dry cleaners, and manufacturing facilities. Ground-level ozone contributes to serious respiratory problems and is of particular concern to individuals with impaired lung function or asthma.
PremAir® ozone-destruction catalyst available from BASF Catalysts is the first commercial product that destroys harmful, ground-level ozone already in the air. When applied to heat exchange surfaces, such as car radiators, PremAir effectively turns them into “smog eaters.” The catalyst reduces ground-level ozone in the air that passes over coated surfaces by converting ozone molecules into oxygen molecules instantly upon contact. PremAir destroys up to 80% of ground-level ozone that passes across it.
“Traditional pollution-control technologies target emissions at the source, before they reach the environment,” says Paul Lamb, Group Vice President, BASF Catalysts, “PremAir is the first catalyst technology designed to destroy pollutants that are already in the air.”
PremAir ozone-destruction catalysts are now in use on more than 3 million vehicles in the US, and are recognized by the California Air Resources Board (CARB) as an effective ozone-reduction strategy. To date, seven car companies have used PremAir catalysts, with some car makers using the technology to achieve “partial zero emissions vehicle” (PZEV) certification credits from the California Air Resources Board.
BASF Catalysts, a division of BASF Corporation, is the world’s leading supplier of environmental and process catalysts. The group offers exceptional expertise in the development of technologies that protect the air we breathe, produce the fuels that power our world and ensure efficient production of a wide variety of chemicals, plastics, adsorbents and other products.
BASF is the world’s leading chemical company: The Chemical Company. Its portfolio ranges from chemicals, plastics, performance products, agricultural products and fine chemicals to crude oil and natural gas. As a reliable partner to virtually all industries, BASF’s high-value products and intelligent system solutions help its customers to be more successful. BASF develops new technologies and uses them to meet the challenges of the future and open up additional market opportunities. It combines economic success with environmental protection and social responsibility, thus contributing to a better future. BASF has approximately 95,000 employees and posted sales of €52.6 billion (approximately $66.1 billion) in 2006. Further information on BASF is available on the Internet at www.basf.com.