In situ evaluation of the NOx removal efficiency of photocatalytic pavements: statistical analysis of the relevance of exposure time and environmental variables

Abstract

In the recent past, the NOx removal efficiency of photocatalytic materials has been subject of many studies with promising results. However, many of these studies involve laboratory tests carried out under standardized climatic exposure conditions, often not representative of the real-world environment. With the aim to bridge this gap, selected photocatalytic materials have been applied to different substrates in outdoor demonstrator platforms at pilot scale as part of the project LIFE-PHOTOSCALING. The paper presents the results of in situ measurements of NOx removal efficiency of the materials, performed during 17 months. Statistical models accounting for the influence of exposure time and relevant environmental variables are derived. They suggest that photocatalytic emulsions on the tested asphalt experience a significant loss of activity over time irrespective of climatic conditions. The efficiency of photocatalytic slurries on asphalt and of concrete tiles, with the photocatalyst applied on surface or in bulk, mainly depends on substrate humidity.

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Funding

This study was funded by the LIFE program (Project LIFE PHOTOSCALING, LIFE 13/ENV/ES/001221, http://www.life-photoscaling.eu/). The authors wish to thank the manufacters for supplying the photocatalytic products implemented on platforms: Sociedad Financiera y Minera, S.A., Active Walls S.L., Industrial Breinco S.A., Cristal France S.A.S.; Impresa Bacchi S.R.L., GranitiFiandre S.p.A, and Fundación Cartif.

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Correspondence to Eva Jiménez-Relinque or Marta Castellote.

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Jiménez-Relinque, E., Hingorani, R., Rubiano, F. et al. In situ evaluation of the NOx removal efficiency of photocatalytic pavements: statistical analysis of the relevance of exposure time and environmental variables. Environ Sci Pollut Res 26, 36088–36095 (2019). https://doi.org/10.1007/s11356-019-04322-y

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Keywords

  • NOx
  • Photocatalysis
  • Pavements
  • Efficiency
  • In situ
  • Outdoor test
  • Pilot scale
  • Environmental variables