Manchester-based Aspira Aerial Applications Ltd, has received an Innovate UK Grant of £100,000 for its project aimed at tackling air pollution by applying a specialist nano titanium coating to building facia. This will turn urban landscapes into air purifiers.
Aspira is an innovative drone technology company, providing equipment and know-how to facilitate the treatment of tall buildings and inaccessible structures with a range of coatings to significantly improve their environmental credentials.
Aspira aims to revolutionise the way air pollution in tackled in towns and cities. Treating 5000m2 of surface typically nullifies the NOx and SOx of 450 Euro 6 diesel cars per annum. Whilst the technology of the coating is not new, (it works on a similar principle to a catalytic converter) the obstacle to date has been the accessibility of existing structures to apply this safely, quickly and effectively. Aspira’s proprietary drone technology overcomes this challenge.
Innovate UK is part of UK Research and Innovation, a non-departmental public body funded by a grant-in-aid from the UK government. Awarded by the Government, the grant to Aspira is part of the second round of funding for Sustainable Innovation. Innovate UK’s feedback states that, “The use of titanium oxide to photo-catalyse NOX is a great idea and the use of drones to deploy the coating to higher reaches of buildings makes sense. There are clear societal and economic benefits to reducing NOX in the short term for the UK and overseas.”
Jon Fenning, Chief Technology Officer at Aspira who spearheaded the Innovate UK Grant application, says: "It’s everyone’s responsibility to help improve urban environments and support the climate change agenda to achieve ‘net zero by 2050.’ The Green Agenda is at the heart of Aspira and we are proud that our innovative approach has been recognised by Innovate UK.
“Aspira tackles air pollution at source. Since 2010, the UK has been in breach of legal Limit Values for NO2 concentrations in major urban areas. In Manchester, Aspira’s home city, local modelling identified 152 stretches of road links where concentrations of NO2 are forecast to exceed the legal Limit Value (40 µg/m3) beyond 2020. Aspira intend to make Manchester a leading force in improving air quality.”
The problem is enormous, the European Environmental Agency study states exposure to fine particulate matter (including NOx and SOx) caused about 417,000 premature deaths in 41 European countries in 2018 alone. Air quality is the primary cause of environmental-related premature deaths in the EU.
The Aspira Operational Safety Case and working procedures ensure the highest health and safety standards at all times – protecting workforces and the public at large in the process. The firm has achieved Civil Aviation Authority firsts by securing their approval for Commercial Operations in congested areas and Certified Exception for flying close to tall buildings. As a result, Aspira is already treating tall buildings and inaccessible structures using a combination of specialist films, coatings and drone technology offering significant benefits in reducing the risk of working at height, and improve upon the time, cost and inconvenience of traditional methods of access.
Aspira is a ground-breaking technology company pioneering a revolutionary method of improving the urban landscape by applying cutting edge coatings to tall buildings and difficult structures to deliver:
- Substantial improvements in air quality
- Better, cleaner, safer towns and cities
- Safe and rapid betterment of buildings
- Accurate, low cost treatment of building surface problems
For further information on Innovate UK, visit: https://www.gov.uk/government/organisations/innovate-uk