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City Takes Action to Raise Awareness on PM2.5 Health Risks

On March 22, Taipei City Government joined Academia Sinica, Realtek Semiconductor Corp., and ASUS in holding the “Air Box PM2.5” press conference. The objective of the project is to increase public awareness on environmental issues.
Realtek and ASUS collaborated to donate an Air Box to every elementary school across Taipei. The device can be used to measure temperatures as well as humidity and PM2.5 levels, after which the data can be uploaded to the cloud platform and website. Parents and children can access the city’s environmental data through the internet or smartphone app.

PM2.5, or fine particulate matter measuring less than 25 micrometers in diameter, has become a source of air pollution in Taiwan. Since 2015, the island has seen reports of PM2.5 concentrations reaching hazardous “purple” levels. In light of this, Taipei City Government, Academia Sinica, Realtek Semiconductor Corp., and ASUS have teamed up to set up Air Box PM2.5 facilities at 300 locations across Taipei City, allowing residents to obtain comprehensible air quality figures and visuals. The public are encouraged to visit Environmental Protection Administration for more precise data. Nonetheless, the presence of large numbers of sensor devices contributes to environmental research and education.
Apart from distributing 150 Air Boxes to elementary schools, Realtek and ASUS will also offer 50 such devices to LASS groups and members of the public. Those interested in obtaining an air box can visit the Taipei City Government booth at Smart City Expo for further details.
The Air Box will upload information on detected temperatures, humidity and PM2.5 levels to the cloud. The data can be downloaded via the open data platform ‘data.taipei’ in the future. The information will also be made available on both the ASUS-developed pm2.5 website (pm2.5.taipei) and the real-time air quality monitoring website http://goo.gl/dcIFFN. In terms of privacy issues, the locations of users will not be disclosed, as the coordinates of the Air Boxes will be blurred.