Microalgae Air Purifier

Abstract/Technology Overview

Harnessing microorganisms, this technology presents a microalgae air purifier for the generation of fresh air while removing carbon dioxide (CO2) and other air pollutants such as particulate matter and volatile organic compounds.

Guidelines from the BCA is for indoor CO2 levels to be maintained below 1000 ppm. However, in many office buildings, CO2 (produced by building occupants) regularly builds up and goes beyond this level. High indoor CO2 leads to fatigue and reduced cognitive function, and is a major cause of the 'Sick Building Syndrome'. Furthermore, high indoor CO2 levels result in higher HVAC energy cost, due to the large amounts of fresh outdoor air required to be ventilated into buildings to remove the CO2. This problem is even worse in large cities with heavy air pollution (e.g. Beijing), where office buildings have difficulty bringing in fresh air from the outside due to the higher requirements for air filtration. In these instances, CO2 builds up excessively and HVAC energy cost skyrockets.

Utilisation of this technology will eliminate stale air and keep a fresh and healthy indoor environment. In addition to creating a healthy indoor environment, it also reduces the need to bring in as much outside air, thus reducing HVAC energy cost.

Technology Features, Specifications and Advantages

  • Microalgae inside the air purifying device acts as a liquid filter for continuous removal of CO2
  • Unlike standard air purifiers in the market that utilise HEPA and activated carbon filters that mainly trap air pollutants, this microalgae air purifier not only removes CO2, but will convert CO2 into oxygen (O2). 
  • Potential to remove other air pollutants, such as particulate matter (e.g. PM2.5) and volatile organic compounds (e.g. formaldehyde).
  • CO2 removal: 200-1000 g/hr
  • O2 generation: 140-730 g/hr
  • Coverage area: 150-1500 m2 

Potential Applications

This technology can be deployed as stand-alone devices or integrated into the HVAC system of office buildings. Potential applications include:

  • Improvement of indoor air quality (especially for CO2 removal and generation of fresh air) in office spaces, co-working spaces, schools, homes, malls, hospitals etc.
  • Reduction of HVAC energy cost (associated with ventilation and cooling) in large office buildings with centralized ventilation systems. 
  • Large scale removal of CO2 and other air pollutants from industrial settings e.g. factories, power generators.
  • Outdoor air purification on a city-scale. Air purification and generation of fresh air in outdoor spaces e.g. parks, government estates, school playgrounds, housing estates, apartment complexes.

Customer Benefit

  • For property owners of office spaces, removal of CO2 and other air pollutants, while generating fresh air (oxygen), will reduce the need for ventilation of outside air into the building, thus reduce HVAC energy cost for ventilation and cooling by up to 50%. This will reduce the cost of building maintenance and create a greener and more sustainable building. Furthermore, the improvement in indoor air quality will attract higher paying tenants.
  • For office tenants, deployment of the device will reduce the number of office workers with sick building syndrome, headaches or fatigue through reduction in indoor CO2 levels and generation of fresh air. Plus, this will improve workplace productivity.
  • Usage in schools will reduce harmful chronic effects of high indoor CO2 on the more vulnerable population i.e. children.
  • Usage in public spaces will create clean outdoor air environment for the public.

Contact Person

Norrapat Shih



Technology Category
  • Biological & Chemical Treatment
  • Life Sciences
Technology Status
  • Available for Licensing
Technology Readiness Level
  • TRL 4

Clear Air, Air Purification, Microalgae, Air purifiers, Microorganism, Hardware