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Students at IISc Bangalore develop air filters that kill germs using green tea ingredients

by Riya Mishra

Date & Time: Jan 17, 2023 9:00 AM

Read Time: 4 minute


In an interesting yet significant finding, a team of researchers at the Indian institute of science Bangalore created an air filter that utilizes green tea ingredients to trap and kill germs. Being hailed as among the most unique developments of the year, this new development has the potential to bring about a progressive change that can soon start to benefit the consumer population.

A potentially ground-breaking development

A team of researchers at the Indian institute of science in Bangalore led by Kaushik Chatterjee and Suryasarathi Bose created a one-of-a-kind air filter that can attract and kill germs by utilizing elements like polycationic polymers and polyphenols, two of the most commonly found ingredients in green tea.

The recent development earned much-welcomed support through special grants from the science and engineering research board (SERB), adding more credibility to the research and the work done in the process.

This new development if successfully transitioned for commercial development of air filters powered by green tea ingredients can drastically improve the lives of millions of people.

As per a research report from the University of Chicago, contaminants in impure or polluted air serve a great risk to human health. Indian cities where these airborne contaminants are in abundance can cause respiratory diseases, and over time deteriorate both mental and physical health, shortening individual life expectancy by 5 to 10 years.

Air filters have been around for centuries, with the first documented use in ancient Persia. However, air filters over half a century have gone through multiple phases of evolution with multiple types of air filters available for purchase by consumers the world over.

Usually, traditional air filters serve to be a great product, but their overtime use can become a breeding ground for germs.

As a result, over time these air filters can cause many health problems. First, they can increase asthma symptoms. They can also worsen allergies and other respiratory 
problems. Additionally, traditional air filters expel chemicals that are harmful and can be adversely affect human health.

One of the most promising types of air filters developed by a talented team of researchers and scientists at the Indian institute of science in Bengaluru uses green tea ingredients like polycationic polymers and polyphenols.

These ingredients have been shown to improve individual health in several ways and their integration in the development of improved air filters can serve as an example of a new and improved type of environmentally friendly air filter.

For example, polycationic polymers can help to remove harmful toxins from the air, while polyphenols can help to boost the immune system and protect against cancer.

Polycationic polymers and polyphenols can bind to tiny particles and pollutants, preventing them from being released back into the air. This means that these new filters can trap significantly more pollution than traditional ones, making them a much better choice for people with respiratory problems or allergies.

Another benefit of green tea-based air filters is that they help to neutralize unpleasant odors. Polyphenols have an antioxidant effect which helps to break down smoky or musty smells, while polycationic polymers work to absorb unpleasant aromas. This makes them a great choice for people who live in areas with high levels of pollution or who have problems with airborne allergies or pests.

Overall, green tea air filters offer numerous advantages over traditional air filters. They are more effective at removing toxins from the air, they are healthier for individuals to breathe in, and they are more environmentally friendly.

Considering all these benefits, it is no wonder that perhaps sooner rather than later, green tea air filters can become an increasingly popular product in the Indian market and across the world.


This unique and eco-friendly type of air filter will require further research before the concept in its entirety can be adopted into the commercial development of new and improved air filters. The recently patented work of a talented research team from IISc Bangalore is without a doubt a revolutionary finding that can inspire other more groundbreaking initiatives. Hence, it promotes the need for continued support by the Indian government into research institutes similar to IISc Bangalore that have the potential and the talent for such innovative projects.

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