We all know that houseplants help purify the air inside a home. If you don't have a green thumb, though, you may still be in luck – Ikea has developed curtains that are claimed to clean indoor air, utilizing a process similar to that which occurs in plants.

Known by the product name Gunrid, the curtains are made of conventional fabric that is subjected to a surface treatment which coats them with a photocatalyst mineral layer. We asked Ikea just what that mineral is, but the company isn't ready to reveal it just yet. That said, we're guessing that it's titanium dioxide, which has previously been used in air-purifying textiles.

In any case, when the material is exposed to indoor or outdoor light, it reportedly reacts by breaking down pollutants such as formaldehyde, that are present in the surrounding air. There's currently no word on how effective the coating is, although the process is said to be "similar to photosynthesis found in nature."

If you're interested in getting a set of the curtains, they should be in Ikea stores sometime next year. The price has yet to be announced.

"Besides enabling people to breathe better air at home, we hope that Gunrid will increase people's awareness of indoor air pollution, inspiring behavioural changes that contribute to a world of clean air," says Lena Pripp-Kovac, Ikea's Head of Sustainability. "Gunrid is the first product to use the technology, but the development will give us opportunities for future applications on other textiles."

Source: Ikea via Inhabitat

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