Why every Car needs a CO2 Monitor/Sensor?

Let’s forget at the moment that combustion vehicles emit carbon dioxide (CO2), and focus on the occupants that spend time inside a confined space where they emit CO2 due to metabolite of cell respiration. Vehicles form part of the indoor spaces where humans spend a lot of time due to traffic or because they have to travel long distances.

Regulatory bodies have been controlling many aspects of modern vehicles; tires, mirrors, seat belts, airbags, screens, etc. However, they have forgotten to look into the air quality inside the vehicles and how it affects the driver’s cognitive performance.

When the air inside a vehicle is not renewed and we keep recirculating the same air over and over, then CO2 is built up in levels that can affect our cognitive performance. Basically, carbon dioxide makes us sleepy.

Researchers have found that for every 500 ppm increase of CO2 results in a drop in response times by 2.4%. A different study concludes that levels of CO2 at 1400 ppm, may cut our basic decision-making ability by 25%, and complex strategic thinking by around 50%.

The solution is easy, we force the air conditioning system to take air from outside. Well, unfortunately, this is not a good idea most of the time because filters cannot capture ultra-fine particles or gases like the notorious toxic nitrogen dioxide. You don’t want your car to suck the air from the exhaust pipe of the car in front of you.

What I propose is that the vehicle’s automation systems with the help of air quality sensors will manage the vehicle’s indoor air quality. If CO2 surpasses certain levels and air quality outdoors is at acceptable levels then the vehicle will switch from recirculating air to outdoor air until CO2 levels will drop down. The driver doesn’t need to know or look at the control panel, as everything happens like magic.

In conclusion, it is a dual safety feature that will help people breathe better air and avoid fatal accidents on the streets.


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