Brighton & Hove Buses to deploy air-cleaning buses  

8 months ago Fri 31st Jan 2020

  • Brighton & Hove Buses and Metrobus will bring in air-cleaning buses by summer 2020 

  • The buses, trialled in Southampton in 2018, have fans on the roof which suck pollutant particles from other traffic into special filters 

  • The filters clean the same amount of air as 6,000 people breathe every hour and clean one cubic metre of air per second 

  • Transport operator and parent company Go-Ahead will roll out its air-filtering bus into four other regions, accelerating the shift to cleaner technology  

  • Go-Ahead is ready to share the innovative technology with other local authorities in battle to tackle pollution and air quality 

Brighton & Hove and Crawley/Gatwick will each get an air-filtering bus by summer. The buses strip pollutant particles from the air outside the bus as they travel, helping to improve air quality and tackle pollution.  

Parent company Go-Ahead will simultaneously deploy air-filtering buses in Manchester, Newcastle, Oxford and Plymouth. 

Each bus is fitted with an air-filtering system made up of three fans on the roof that suck ultra-fine particles and dirt (known as PM10’s) from general traffic into special filters.  

The rollout follows a successful trial in Southampton in 2018, where initial tests showed that a single bus cleaned 3.2 million cubic metres - the equivalent to the volume of 1,288 Olympic swimming pools of city air - across 9,000 miles during 894 hours of testing. This bus removed as much as 65g of particulates from the air in a 100-day period.  

The air-filtering buses remove up to 99.5% of particulate matter that travels through the filter, cleaning one cubic metre of air per second and filtering the same amount of air as 6,000 people breathe in an hour. 

The buses come amid growing concern about rising levels of pollution and demands for local authorities to do to more to clean up the air we breathe. 

The Department for Environment Food and Rural Affairs (DEFRA) estimates that particulate air pollution reduces people’s life expectancy in the UK by an average of six months. 

Martin Harris, Brighton & Hove Buses Managing Director, said: “Our buses already play a major part in tackling urban air quality issues; buses are integral to cleaning up our towns and cities. 

“Our air-filtering system can add to this. It exceeded all expectations of the environmental benefits it can deliver during the Southampton trials. The time has come to trial this system in Sussex. 

“We believe the air-filtering bus provides an extra dimension for councils to consider as they explore initiatives such as clean air zones to tackle toxic pollution.”