IKEA has discovered a unique way to decrease indoor pollutants with a new air purifying curtain. The Sweden-based company has developed a material that absorbs and breaks down hazardous substances in a process similar to photosynthesis in order to improve indoor air quality.

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Atmospheric pollution is a major issue across the planet, especially in dense, urban environments. Scientists estimate that close to 90 percent of the world’s population lives in areas that suffer from poor air quality. IKEA hopes that its new curtain, called the GUNRID, will help reduce those numbers and cut down on air pollutants in homes.

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“Besides enabling people to breathe better air at home, we hope that GUNRID will increase people’s awareness of indoor air pollution, inspiring behavioral changes that contribute to a world of clean air,” Lena Pripp-Kovac, IKEA’s head of sustainability, shared.

close-up of air purifying curtain with IKEA tag

According to IKEA, the curtain was developed using state-of-the-art technology that is akin to how plants naturally filter air. The chemicals that filter pollutants are activated via light, both artificial and natural sunlight. IKEA worked with scientists in Asia and Europe to develop the curtain and hopes to use the same technology in other products down the road.

IKEA has a long history of developing eco-friendly practices. For the past several years, the company has been reducing the use of hazardous materials in its factories, which has greatly decreased its carbon footprint. The company plans to further cut its impact on the environment by 70 percent over the next decade.

The furniture outlet has also put in place several initiatives to combat air pollution. This includes the Better Air Now! Program, which recycles rice straw and turns it into materials that are used in IKEA products. Farmers usually burn rice straw, producing fumes that decrease air quality in regions across the globe.

Customers will be able to purchase the GUNRID curtain at some point in 2020. It is unclear how many future products will feature the same technology, but it will be interesting to see what IKEA comes up with. Hopefully, other companies will follow IKEA’s lead and develop air purifying products of their own.


Images via IKEA