Plume Labs: Detailed real-time mapping of air pollution

The high-tech compagny Plume Labs was created in May 2015 by two young French engineers,  their goal is helping urban citizens to understand their environment and monitor their exposure to pollution to improve their health and well-being. They have launched an application presenting real-time air pollution mapping. It is possible with Plume Labs to know about the air pollution in real time for more than a hundred cities in the world, including Twenty cities in France and this, street by street.  Plume Labs explains that air quality can differ from one street to another, or even from one room to another. The purpose of the application is according to one of its founders Romain Lacombe to have a better informations about the air quality.

Detailed real-time mapping of air pollution of Kyoto (Japan)


If Plume Labs is not the first to offer real-time pollution mapping (see AirParif and Maire de Paris), the startup offers the most complete version because its development relies on an individual air quality sensor. Plume Labs has developped and presented in CES (Consumer Electronics Show) 2017 at Las Vegas a mobile application allowing to know the level of ambient pollution. This application need to be connected with the indivudual sensor, wich allows everyone to measure their exposure to pollution directly. Each individual can buy a Flow 2 sensor for $175 and contribute for open data.

                                                                        Flow 2 Sensor

How does it work?

To produce this data, Plume Labs collects data from several sources. First, the start-up uses open data from official air quality monitoring agencies. Atmospheric data are also used, as well as weather forecasts, population density, pollution sources, urban typology, and real-time road traffic. Finally, these data are supplemented by Flow 2 sensors to further visualize air quality. It is therefore from a combination of data that the start-up proposes its own measurement index, which is consistent with the indices used elsewhere in the world, particularly in Europe and the USA.

Illustration of detailed real-time mapping of air pollution of New York ( USA)