Removal of harmful VOCs from the air supply to improve air quality for passengers and crew.


A device to reliably and cheaply remove organo-phosphate and other volatile organic compounds (VOCs), which are known to be present in the cabin air supply of airliners. The VOCs present in the bleed-air from the aircraft engines are known to be harmful to humans, as these are carcinogenic and can cause other long-term deleterious health effects.  (Please refer to: and These contaminants arise as hot air is bled from the engine air-intakes (which contains oils and other sources of VOCs) to be mixed with cold air drawn from outside the aircraft.  The HEPA filters that are installed in aircraft deal with particulates and bacteria, but cannot deal with gaseous VOCs.  Our device, is a retro-fit to the hot-air supply that is bled directly from the aircraft engines (before the air-mixer-box) and scrubs any VOCs present. The key results are (1) the removal of these harmful VOCs from the cabin air supply to improve air quality for passengers and crew on-board the aircraft; and (2) reduction of the growing litigation risk arising from awareness of the dangers of exposure to theses VOCs, both instantaneous and also chronic. This innovation has arisen as a spin-off from the work that MultiFuel Burners Limited has been conducting over the last 10 years, looking at the combustion of (1) low-volatile fuels and the reduction of the effects of combusting fuels at high temperatures (>1100oC) when the production of (1) Nitrous oxides; and (2) unstable VOCs becomes problematic. We have identified a cheap and reliable means of removing VOCs from high temperature air flows and verified that this will also work in the range 400oC to 550oC, which we believe to be the temperature of the hot-air bled directly from the aircraft engines.  The device and scrubbing system have applications in other markets as a means of removing VOCs from air flow at a wide range of operating temperatures. The device is at an experimental stage and requires further development work and refinement to be a commercially ready product.

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