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Development of VOCs and ozone Micro-analysers based on microfluidic devices for Aircraft Cabin Air mOnitoring (MACAO)

Project description

Measuring pollutants inside aircraft cabins

Pollutants like ozone and volatile organic compounds (VOCs) within aircraft cabins pose a threat to human health, causing acute respiratory issues, worsening asthma, and increasing cardiopulmonary diseases. Even brief exposure can result in breathing discomfort, irritations, and headaches. However, there is currently a lack of real-time instruments tailored to aircraft settings. In this context, the EU-funded MACAO project aims to develop two analytical instruments employing microfluidic devices. These instruments will enable the measurement of VOCs and ozone concentrations while taking into consideration the specific limitations of aircraft environments. The project will draw upon the expertise of consortium partners specialising in real-time monitoring, microfluidics, and electronics and software development.


The origins of pollutants inside the aircraft cabin are various. Ozone comes from outside, particularly when the aircraft is flying at high altitudes near the stratospheric ozone layer. In addition to the materials emissions, carbonyl species can be also produced in the cabin by reaction of ozone with unsaturated VOCs.
Ozone and VOCs can cause acute respiratory problems, aggravate asthma and increase cardiopulmonary illnesses, with breathing discomfort, irritations and headaches after even short-term exposure.
None real-time instruments have been currently developed and specifically designed to meet the constraints in a aircraft, i.e. compactness, security, automatic pressure correction, the autonomy towards a large pure gas cylinder necessary for both its operating and its analytical procedure (blank).
The MACAO project aims at developing two analytical instruments to measure VOCs and ozone concentrations and based on microfluidic devices in order to address all the contraints mentioned above.
This project will be built on the experience gained in analytical development based on real-time monitoring (CNRS Strasbourg, IN’AIR SOLUTIONS), microfluidics (INSA Toulouse, CNRS Strasbourg) or in electronics and software development (TRONICO) by the partners. For instance, the micro-analyser of BTEX recently developed in Strasbourg will be updated to measure other VOCs such as ethanol or acetone.
The MACAO Project will be organised in 5 work Packages as follows :
WP1 : Project Management
WP2 : Specifications/state of the art/technological choices
WP3 : Development and validation of laboratory prototypes
WP4 : Development and validation of integrated demonstrators
WP5 : Communication & Dissemination
In addition, the start-up IN'AIR SOLUTIONS (Partner 4) being responsible for marketing the developed instruments may take advantage of technological advances in this project, for all indoor environments (aircrafts, housing, workplaces, industrial sites, public buildings, …).


Net EU contribution
€ 169 211,01
75794 Paris

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Ile-de-France Ile-de-France Paris
Activity type
Research Organisations
Total cost
€ 175 442,50

Participants (4)