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Smog becomes colourful in Paris

Aerophile BalloonLiving in Bristol you have to love balloons.  Every year an enormous festival happens with shapes including fire hydrants, Rupert the Bear and even Ikea hoardings.   That said, there are none as impressive as one in Paris.

Making a huge sweeping generalisation, the Parisians always had an artistic flair so it makes sense that the city would make a smog alert colourful.  The French company Aérophile has recently launched (literally) a helium-filled balloon that changes colour as the air quality worsens.

The balloon will be tethered in the Parc Andre Citroën and uses data on NO2, ozone and particulates from Airparif.  According to the release the balloons colour code is:

  • red for highly polluted air,
  • orange for polluted,
  • yellow for mediocre,
  • light green for clean and
  • green for very clean.

It also tells Parisiens of the air quality at traffic junctions, “using a high-power rotating laser beam that sweeps the envelope’s southern tropical plane.”  Greenbang isn’t quite sure of what this last bit means but is assuming it will become clear when looking at the balloon.

A live feed of the balloon can be found here.

According to EcoGeek the balloon can be seen as far as 12 miles away and lift as many as 30 passengers up to 150 meters above the city.

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