What is the point of monitoring air quality if the data cannot be analyzed in real-time? This same question has been raised by the technology company Algorand, which in 2020 initiated the development of a new global network of mobile air quality sensors, to "validate, filter and publish data in real-time through a chain of blocks".
"Historically, air pollution is monitored through large and expensive scientific instruments installed in a small number of locations, and data is not published in real-time. However, through this highly secure, fast, and energy-efficient protocol, the data is recorded in the blockchain so that anyone can access them, "explains Claudio Parrinello, CEO of this project.
Air quality monitoring can improve worldwide
According to Algorand, current methods of air quality monitoring are inadequate due to the lack of real-time data reporting, which, as a result, leads to delays in pollution peaks and the lack of warnings to endangered populations.
"The respect for the environment of the Algorand network makes it a natural partnership to help global populations access transparent and reliable air quality information at their locations," explains W. Sean Ford, chief operating officer of Algorand.
Likewise, according to Claudio Parrinello, "through Algorand’s highly secure, fast and energy-efficient protocol, the data is recorded in the blockchain so that anyone can access them. These data are of great commercial and scientific value, as air quality pollution will become more frequent in the coming decades".
Without a doubt, this project sets a precedent along with other research that has also managed to minimize the difficulties in monitoring air quality. In 2019, a team of scientists in Colorado also managed to develop a label-sized air quality sensor. The device offered real-time data, emulating part of the mechanism designed by Algorand.