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Project Type
UTRC Faculty Development Mini-grants
Project Dates
09/01/2012 - 09/30/2013
Principal Investigators
Project Status

Developing transportation infrastructure without compromising environmental quality is of paramount importance. This can also lead to improvement in the US economic competitiveness, which is intimately linked to modern transportation systems. However, developing such system in a sustainable way is not trivial. The proposed paper will explore a topic of self-cleaning and air purifying structural components, which can save energy via reducing of surface contamination (e.g. soiling), improve environment via decomposition of pollutants emitted from the vehicles and protect human health by decreasing the ozone levels in urban environment. We will look into concrete, glass and asphalt coated with inexpensive photocatalytic films, which are currently being developed in collaboration with a small NY based company. This paper will assess the long term performance and air purifying potential of these films, which will be done in collaboration with the School of Marine and Atmospheric Sciences and the Brookhaven National Lab. Moreover, this project will have an enormous impact on a career development of the PI, who is the first ever Provostial appointment in Materials and Environment area here at Stony Brook.

Ultimately, the above-mentioned approach can have a significant relevance to the USDOT goals, such as development of livable communities by providing an access to environmentally sustainable travel options. It can also have a potentially transformative impact in terms of another DOT goal focused on environmental sustainability, where self-cleaning properties of the coatings can improve both energy and water conservation. This paper also aims at contributing to Focus area 5 (Promoting livable and sustainable communities through quality of life improvements and diverse transportation development) and Focus Area 7 (Promoting freight productivity, efficiency, and sustainability through multi-modal policy, planning and logistics).

The proposed work project will involve both literature and experimental components as we already accumulated some background data to make a significant progress in this area. For example, we currently have all experimental setups necessary for measurements of self-cleaning properties of coated concrete and asphalt. Moreover,  Page 2 this will be complemented by experimental apparatus for determining atmospheric pollutants removal, which has been already tested in our lab.