Have you ever gone on a trip and then find out someone didn't enjoy it as much due to the quality of the air? Maybe this someone was you yourself as many people are sensitive to air pollution or pollen (e.g. asthma, covid-19 lung damage or hay-fever). This oftentimes make people cancel trips or not go out at all.
The solution is DAt, which uses air quality measurements from EU space data to recommend routes and destinations for short-distance travels that meets an individual's need from a health perspective.
Imagine you are planning a bike trip with friends and you know one of your friends is asthmatic. You put your starting location and health data in DAt; from there you get a local route planned out which avoids regions with lower air quality.
🛰️ EU space technologies
The space data brings the core value to our idea as it are the metrics that the recommended routes and travel locations are based upon.
The remote atmospheric monitoring capabilities of satellites and its instruments determine the concentration of air pollutants (e.g. aerosols and pollen). Historical data is available for many of these pollutants as well as forecasts from the Copernicus Atmosphere Monitoring Service (CAMS). Forecasts are created by training a Machine Learning (ML) model using the historical data, which then is able to predict to a certain extent the future development of air quality in an area. In particular, CAMS contains a dataset called European air quality analyses and forecasts; which is what is used within our tool.
These forecasts are also used to generate a heat-map, which visualize to the user why a route and/or destination is recommended. A user needs to have trust in DAt and a clear visual experience supports how a ML model came to this conclusion.
🏖️ (Re)Visit Europe
DAt is tackling two challenges at the same time: exploring nature with care as well as finding sustainable destinations. The focus is on short-distance travel, which eliminates most pollutant modes of transport such as the plane. Short-distance travel also inherently promotes walking and biking, which are slower, but more sustainable modes of transport that are viable for short range.
By enabling people to enjoy their surroundings, even when parts of it could be hostile to them, it makes them more appreciative of what is out there. For example, somebody that is allergic to pollen from a specific tree is more prone to cutting down that tree when it has a profound negative effect on them. However, when the digital solution shows them that they could easily avoid negative effects, it does not allow those negative feelings to arise.
- Aletta Tordai, Designer & Data Engineer, experienced Data Engineer with a hobby of designing things that work both aesthetically and functional.
- Dim Hoogeveen, Project Manager & Data Engineer, experienced Data Engineer that knows how to translate business requirements into technical specifications.
- Lena Kyropoulos, Business Developer, journalist with extensive knowledge in business and tourism, that traveled in 53 countries.