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UPDATED: 16:18, November 24, 2004
Robots to tackle air pollution
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A robot will soon go on duty in the city cleaning up indoor air pollution, which has become a major source of concern for many locals.

The shanghai Environment Protection Industry Association started a promotion for the robot yesterday, which officials say will purify poisonous fumes, such as formaldehyde.

It can also filter tiny particles from the air, such as those caused by cigarette smoking.

The robot, working like a dust collector, can emit negative ions to absorb toxic particles in the air while consuming very little electric power, according to Wang Fang, secretary general of the association's indoor division.

Indoor air is mainly polluted by shoddy home decorations and furniture. In some industrial cities, outdoor air pollution can make the problem worse when it gets into homes and offices through windows.

According to a national seminar on indoor air quality earlier this year, 111,000 people in China die from diseases caused by indoor air pollution every year, about the same number of people killed by traffic accidents in the country.

Many health experts blame toxic indoor fumes for the country's rising problems with lung cancer and leukemia.

"The robot, or other air purifying facilities, will become a trend as people are paying more and more attention to their living quality," said Ma Keqin, vice general manager of Gree New Technology Institute Co.

Source: Shanghai Daily

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