Treepex is a portable barrel-like device that allegedly uses living tree cells compressed in replaceable cartridges to turn carbon dioxide into oxygen, emulating a tree’s ability to transform polluted air into mineral-enriched air. It sounds like a game-changer for sure, but nobody knows if it actually works, plus, it looks kind of funny.
Developed by a Georgian, Tbilisi-based, startup with the same name, Treepex claims to provide a real solution to the world’s growing air pollution problem. Using a new technology called CRISPR, the company was apparently able “to extract the DNA of actual trees to recreate the living cells that are responsible for photosynthesis”, and compress them into cartridges that absorb polluted air and release clean fresh air for the user. All you have to do is plug a cartridge into the tubular Treepex, stick it into your mouth, and breathe.
“When you take a look at a leaf with a microscope you can see the cells which are responsible for the photosynthesis. And that’s only a very, very little part of the entire leaf. Simply, think about this as if thousands of leaves were squeeze into the small cartridge,” the company wrote on its official blog. “Basically, you will have a supply of fresh air always on hand!”
“The device is easy to use, portable, and handy. Just imagine taking your bike to work, but instead of inhaling all the exhaust of cars, you can breath fresh air! Or, what if you live in one of the most polluted cities? Just use Treepex when you walk down the street without any worry you may kill yourself by simply breathing.”
Treepex founders Bacho Khachidze and Lashe Kvantaliani have been involved in environmental projects for a few years now. A couple of years ago, they started an initiative to encourage people all around the world to plant trees, by creating an app that allowed users to track the development of a tree after planting it. Unfortunately, that failed to raise people’s interest, so they decided to “find another way” to improve air quality.
The bizarre-looking mouthpiece has an LED indicator that lets the user know when it’s time to change the cartridge, and also comes with a wireless fast charger that only takes around 30 minutes to recharge the device. A full charge allegedly guarantees around 24 hours of use.
“If we cannot stop deforestation, what if we can bring the forest into our everyday life? Of course, the fact remains we can’t stop deforestation and that’s one of the reasons why they decided to find an immediate and effective solution to breathe your own forest using Treepex,” the Georgian entrepreneurs wrote on Minds.
Khachidze and Kvantaliani hope that Treepex will become an inseparable part of our lives, not only saving the air pollution problem, but also saving lives in case of nuclear wars and even helping mankind colonize Mars.
Is it just me, or does that last statement sound a bit too bold? We don’t even now how this CRISPR technology actually works, and while Treepex does have its own presentation website, there is no technical information or a release date available. All this makes me think that this device is just an ingenious way of raising awareness about air pollution. Who in their right mind would actually walk around with this thing in their mouth, anyway?
Well, the Chinese might. They’re are buying canned air over there to offer their lungs some relief from all that contaminated air and smog, so looking funny is probably not that big of a problem.