No, it isn’t some mysterious act of alchemy. It is, in fact, a miracle of science and creative thinking. When MIT researcher Anirudh Sharma was travelling in a taxi in India, he noticed the soot deposited on his skin. It was then that he had a moment of epiphany. What if the soot the from the air-pollution could be repurposed into something productive? And then he invented Kaala, a device that can gobble up harmful pollutants and instantly repurpose them into black printer ink, called Kaalink. Sharma is the co-owner of Graviky Labs, which has developed a range of products such as pens, markers, paints and ink, all made from carbon soot under the aptly titled brand Air-ink. The products are currently in the certification process.
According to the Graviky website, their vision is to “arrest the vehicular, environmental soot in a way that it doesn’t reach our lungs.” The technology hits two birds with one stone. On the one hand, it helps protect our bodies from the detrimental effects of pollutants and on the other, by producing ink from soot, it seeks to lessen the use of harmful chemicals use in its manufacturing. It could have huge environmental impact as Graviky claims 30ml of their ink is equivalent to 45 minutes of car emissions.
The entire process has been tested out in Hong Kong, where the Graviky team in association with Beer Tiger used 2,500 hours worth of carbon emissions to create 150 litres of Air-ink, using which the artists painted the streets of Hong Kong. It was a stunning amalgamation of science and art to create something beautiful out of thin air.
“Instead of telling people to buy a new car to replace their old one, we’re talking about a technology that can prevent pollution from going into the air and in our lungs,” Graviky co-owner Nikhil Kaushik told The Huffington Post. One cannot help but marvel at the sheer ingenuity of the innovation. In an age where the threat of global warming looms large, the hopes of the world do rest upon the shoulders of such creative inventors.
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