Daan Roosegaarde's 'vacuum cleaner' to suck smog from Beijing skies
October 25, 2013 -- Updated 1114 GMT (1914 HKT)
Artist Daan Roosegaarde hopes to create columns of clean air for Beijing's surgical-mask wearing residents.
- Dutch artist and designer has come up with a device that aims to suck pollutants from air
- Technology will be tested in a Beijing park
- Project aims to draw attention to smog rather than provide long-term solution
Hong Kong (CNN) -- A Dutch artist and designer has come up with a device he hopes will suck pollutants from Beijing's smog-cloaked skies, creating columns of clean air for the city's surgical-mask wearing residents.
An electromagnetic field generated by copper coils will pull airborne particles in the smog to the ground where they can be easily cleaned.
"It's like when you have a balloon which has static (electricity) and your hair goes toward it. Same with the smog," says artist Daan Roosegaarde.
His studio has reached an agreement with the Beijing government to test the technology in one of the capital's parks.
China's toxic smog problem
China's smog soars
Smog in China kills millions prematurely
With its skies regularly shrouded by filthy gray smog, Beijing this week unveiled a series of emergency measures to tackle the problem.
Roosegaarde says an indoor prototype has already proven it works and is confident the results -- with the help of a team of scientists and engineers -- can be replicated outside:
"Beijing is quite good because the smog is quite low, it's in a valley so there's not so much wind. It's a good environment to explore this kind of thing."
"We'll be able to purify the air and the challenge is to get the top of the smog so you can see the sun again."
Roosegaarde acknowledges that projects like this are a way of drawing attention to the problem, rather than a viable solution to Beijing's dire air pollution.
"This is not the real answer for smog. The real answer has to do with clean cars, different industry and different lifestyles."
However, he hopes the project will make a "radical statement" by allowing the city's residents to realize the difference between breathing clean and smog-filled air.
"I want to take a park in Beijing, 50m by 50m square, and make it the cleanest park in Beijing," he says. He is still discussing with local authorities which park will be used.
Roosegaarde's studio has worked on several projects that use static electricity in unusual ways; creating a road that charges electric cars and a floor that generates electricity when danced on.
Today's five most popular stories
Part of complete coverage on
October 29, 2014 -- Updated 0518 GMT (1318 HKT)
A top retired general has confessed to taking bribes, becoming the highest-profile figure in China's military to be caught up in President Xi Jinping's war on corruption.
October 27, 2014 -- Updated 0507 GMT (1307 HKT)
A group in China escapes from a stuck elevator thanks to one man and his trusty hammer. CNN's Kristie Lu Stout reports.
October 23, 2014 -- Updated 1352 GMT (2152 HKT)
Facebook's founder says he taught himself Mandarin and tested his skills with students in China.
October 24, 2014 -- Updated 0133 GMT (0933 HKT)
China launched an experimental spacecraft that is scheduled to orbit the moon before returning to Earth.
October 28, 2014 -- Updated 1619 GMT (0019 HKT)
Full marks for ingenuity: This was a truly high-tech scam.
October 21, 2014 -- Updated 0526 GMT (1326 HKT)
The rationale behind Confucius Institutes -- an international chain of academic centers run by an arm of the Chinese government -- is understandable.
October 24, 2014 -- Updated 1511 GMT (2311 HKT)
Smooth jazz saxophonist Kenny G wants everyone to know that he's not a foreign agitator trying to defy the Chinese Communist Party.
October 17, 2014 -- Updated 1113 GMT (1913 HKT)
A smuggler in Dandong, a Chinese border town near North Korea, tells CNN about the underground trade with North Korean soldiers
October 28, 2014 -- Updated 0511 GMT (1311 HKT)
Yenn Wong got quite a surprise one morning earlier this month when she found out an exact copy of her Hong Kong restaurant had opened in China.
October 15, 2014 -- Updated 0315 GMT (1115 HKT)
When I first came across a "virtual lover" service on e-commerce site Taobao, China's version of Amazon, I thought it was hype.
October 14, 2014 -- Updated 1315 GMT (2115 HKT)
Each year Yi Jiefeng does what she can to stop China turning into a desert.
October 13, 2014 -- Updated 1454 GMT (2254 HKT)
As its relationship with the West worsen, Russia is pivoting east in an attempt to secure business with China.
October 8, 2014 -- Updated 0229 GMT (1029 HKT)
Aspiring Chinese comics performing in Shanghai's underground comedy scene hope to bring stand-up to the masses.
September 30, 2014 -- Updated 1654 GMT (0054 HKT)
Liu Wen is one of the world's highest-paid models and the first Chinese face to crack the top five in Forbes' annual list of top earners.
October 3, 2014 -- Updated 1144 GMT (1944 HKT)
Cunning wolf? Working class hero? Or bland Beijing loyalist? C.Y. Leung was a relative unknown when he came to power in 2012.
October 2, 2014 -- Updated 1125 GMT (1925 HKT)
App hopes to help those seeking a way out of China's overstrained public health system.
October 3, 2014 -- Updated 0020 GMT (0820 HKT)
Yards from pro-democracy protests, stands the Hong Kong garrison of the People's Liberation Army (PLA), China's armed forces.