The main differences in the air between
healthy outdoor environments and unhealthy or harmful outdoor environments
are the levels of negative ions, ozone, and pollutants. Healthy environments
have higher levels of negative ions, moderate levels of ozone, and low levels
of particles and/or pollutants. Unfortunately, most indoor environments are
more similar to unhealthy and hazardous outdoor environments.
This includes negative ion, ozone, and pollutant levels.
As an example, in healthy outdoor environments
such as in the mountains, or in a country meadow, the negative ion concentration
is typically 2000 to 4000 negative ions per cubic centimeter. By contrast,
the negative ion concentration in an unhealthy place, such as on congested
L.A. freeways, is less than 100 negative ions per cubic cm. The negative
ion concentration in most indoor environments is between 100 and 200 negative
ions per cubic cm. In extremely healthy and invigorating environments, such
as near a large waterfall, the negative ion level is around 1,000,000 per
cubic cm., which is the level produced by the "Surround Air" Ionizer.
The ozone level in healthy outdoor environments
is typically between 0.02 ppm (parts per million) and 0.04 ppm, which is
the ozone level produced by Surround Air Ionizer purifiers. In most unhealthy
indoor environments, the ozone level is virtually zero. In some unhealthy
indoor and outdoor environments, the ozone level may actually be well above
0.1 ppm, which is too high. However, this only happens when the hydrocarbon
level (pollution from industrial smokestacks, vehicle emissions, etc.) rises
to a very high concentration. It has been proven that ozone breaks down the
hydrocarbon (a.k.a. VOC) molecules. When the pollution is high enough though,
the nature cannot help but to overcompensate under this strain.
This is why indoor environments need a source
of negative ions and ozone. In addition to being beneficial to your health
when occurring at proper levels, they are highly effective at removing
particles and contaminants from the air, which results in a much healthier
environment by itself.
Particulate removal is critical since there
are a variety of sources of indoor air pollution in the typical home. In fact, the EPA advises us
that indoor air pollution is the nation's worst environmental health
problem, even 2 to 10 times as bad as outdoor air pollution. In addition,
most people spend well over 90% of their time inside, making clean indoor
air even more important for our health.
Filters may remove some of the larger particles
from the air (0.3 microns or larger), but it is more critical to remove
the finer particles out of the air. The smaller the particle, the deeper
it is taken into the lungs when inhaled. The deeper a particle travels into
the lungs, the more damage it causes. Fortunately, negative ions can remove particles as small as 0.01 microns. This allows them
to remove particle pollutants that air filters cannot, such as bacteria, fine dust, viruses, etc.;
while ozone removes chemicals, fumes, odors, and other gaseous pollutants like these that negative
ions are not effective on.