22 April 2004
Volvo IAQS ensures clean cabin air
The air in a car must be perceived to be clean
by the occupants, including hypersensitive people. This often requires the
ambient air to be cleaned or prevented from entering the car through the
Volvo Cars has designed IAQS (Interior Air
Quality System) as a complement to the climate control system to automatically
close the air intake as required.
IAQS consists of a filter and a sensor.
Consisting of an element impregnated with activated carbon, the filter (also
known as a combined filter) removes particles and pollen in the incoming air.
The activated carbon absorbs gases and unpleasant odours. The sensor detects
the presence of substances such as nitrogen dioxide, carbon monoxide and
hydrocarbons – the main constituents of diesel and petrol exhaust gases
– in the ambient air.
"One significant advantage of IAQS is that
the system also reacts to carbon monoxide, a substance that an activated carbon
filter does not trap," comments Anders Löfvendahl, a Volvo Cars
If the level of contamination become too high, the
air intake is closed automatically and the interior air is recirculated,
preventing contamination from entering the passenger compartment. The system
thus ensures that the air in the cabin is cleaner, reducing the risk to
asthmatics, allergy suffers and other hypersensitive individuals.
"To verify that our system is as effective as
possible, we tested it under real-life conditions with the aim of achieving the
air quality targets recommended by the World Health Organisation (WHO),"
says Anders Löfvendahl. "Volvo cars comply with the recommendations
by a comfortable margin – a major advance in terms of a healthier cabin