Excellent Hair Fall Treatment
Search: Look for:   Last 1 Month   Last 6 Months   All time

Trees may help generate electricity in air

Washington, Thu, 22 Mar 2012 ANI

Washington, March 22 (ANI): Plants may play a role in electrifying the atmosphere, a new finding has suggested.

Scientists have long-suspected an association between trees and electricity but researchers from Queensland University of Technology (QUT) think they may have finally discovered the link.

Dr Rohan Jayaratne and Dr Xuan Ling from QUT's International Laboratory for Air Quality and Health (ILAQH), led by Professor Lidia Morawska, ran experiments in six locations around Brisbane, including the Brisbane Forest Park, Daisy Hill and Mt Coot-tha.

They found the positive and negative ion concentrations in the air were twice as high in heavily wooded areas than in open grassy areas, such as parks.

Dr Jayaratne, who is also a member of QUT's Institute of Health and Biomedical Innovation (IHBI), said that natural ions in the air were mainly created by ionisation due to two processes - radiation from the trace gas radon in air and cosmic radiation from space.

Radon is a by-product of the radioactive decay of radium, which is present in minute quantities in rocks and is continually exhaled by the ground.

"Because radium is found in rocks and radon is soluble in water, ground water is particularly rich in radon," he said.

"Trees act as radon pumps, bringing the gas to the surface and releasing it to the atmosphere through transpiration - a process where water absorbed by the root system is evaporated into the atmosphere from leaves. This is especially prevalent for trees with deep root systems, such as eucalypts," he explained.

The QUT scientists estimated that, in a eucalyptus forest, trees might account for up to 37 per cent of the radon in the air when transpiration rates were highest.

Dr Jayaratne said though there was still a lot more research which needed to be done in relation to the role of ions, the findings have potentially important implications for the atmosphere, climate and human health.

"Although there is an established link between airborne particles and human health, the role of ions is largely unknown," he said.

"However, we do know that approximately one-half of the particles that we inhale during normal breathing are retained in our respiratory system and it has been shown that charged particles were more likely to be deposited in the lungs than uncharged particles.

"We do not believe that ions are dangerous - the danger comes from the pollutants. If there are no dangerous particles in the air to attach to the ions there is no risk of ill health," he added.

The findings were published in the journal Environmental Science and Technology. (ANI)


LATEST IMAGES
King of Bhutan, the Bhutan Queen and Crown Prince meeting the PM Modi
PM Narendra Modi welcomes the King of Bhutan
PM Modi paying tributes at the portrait of Sardar Vallabhbhai Patel
People take part in the Run For Unity on the Rashtriya Ekta Diwas
PM Modi flagging off the Run For Unity on the Rashtriya Ekta Diwas
Post comments:
Your Name (*) :
Your Email :
Your Phone :
Your Comment (*):
  Reload Image
 
 

Comments:


 

OTHER TOP STORIES


Excellent Hair Fall Treatment
Careers | Privacy Policy | Feedback | About Us | Contact Us | | Latest News
Copyright © 2015 NEWS TRACK India All rights reserved.