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New Ideas

Introducing BioSolar Leaves


Julian Melchiorri and his team of researchers at Arborea have created what they call a ‘Bionic Chandelier’ – a living and breathing structure made up of a collection of BioSolar leaves which purify the air indoors using microalgae.

The team that developed the project say that the same process involved here can remove carbon dioxide and produce breathable oxygen at a rate equivalent to a hundred trees from the surface area of just a single tree.

In addition, the team has developed an innovative cultivation system which facilitates the growth of tiny plant-life - such as microalgae, diatoms and phytoplankton - on large solar panel-like structures. These can then be installed on land, buildings and other developments to improve surrounding air quality. The system also produces a sustainable source of organic biomass from which the team extracts nutritious food additives for plant-based food products.

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Professor Neil Alford, Associate Provost (Academic Planning) at Imperial College London, said: “Air pollution is one of London’s most urgent challenges, and Imperial is committed to finding sustainable and resilient solutions to this threat. This collaboration with Arborea is an exceptional opportunity to showcase the power of Cleantech at our White City Campus. Through our White City masterplan we are bringing forward sustainable solutions that have the potential to improve environmental outcomes in west London, throughout the UK, and across the world.” 

Cllr Stephen Cowan, Leader of London Borough of Hammersmith and Fulham, said: “Arborea’s BioSolar leaves are set to revolutionize air quality in London and across the world. Our administration is planning to be the first to put them into our borough as we're determined Hammersmith & Fulham will lead the way in cleaning our filthy air.”


Julian Melchiorri, Founder and CEO of Arborea, said: “When I founded Arborea my goal was to tackle climate change while addressing the critical issues related to the food system. This pilot plant will produce sustainable healthy food additives while purifying the air, producing oxygen and removing carbon dioxide from the surrounding environment. It will provide the opportunity to fully harness Arborea’s BioSolar Leaf dual action in real operating conditions and help to unlock the technology’s full potential.”

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