Particulate matter (PM) is the air pollutant which has the most severe impact on health.
Currently, around 90% of the population of European cities for which PM data exist is exposed to levels exceeding WHO air quality guidelines levels.
Average life expectancy in the European Union is estimated to be 8.6 months lower due to exposure to particulate matter resulting from human activities. The inhalation of particulate matter can lead to asthma, lung cancer, cardiovascular and respiratory diseases, birth defects, and premature death.
In addition to its impact on human health, particulate matter can also have adverse effects on climate change and ecosystems.
The Horizon Prize on materials for clean air will be awarded to the most affordable, sustainable and innovative design-driven material solution that can reduce the concentration of particulate matter in urban areas.
The contest has been launched and will run until the end of 2018. Contestants will be able to submit their entries from 26 January 2017 until 23 January 2018. The rules of contest are available online.