Dyson Patent Implies the Company Will Be Creating Air-Purifying Headphones

Many nations with pollution issues could benefit from some extra air purification.
Fabienne Lang

Better known for its vacuum cleaners and hand-dryers, Dyson may soon be adding a new two-in-one device to its list of creations. 

The company filed a patent in July last year in the U.K. for headphones that purify the air within their surroundings. First posted in Bloomberg, the aim of the headphones is, naturally, to produce sound, but also to combat air pollution. 


The headphones

The product will include a filter within the headphones, this leads to a sort of nozzle that's placed in front of the headphone user so as to purify the air for them. 

The patent clearly stipulated that "air pollution is an increasing problem and a variety of air pollutants have known or suspected harmful effects on human health." Targeting pollution as well as providing good music may be the answer to everyday street walking. 

Dyson Patent Implies the Company Will Be Creating Air-Purifying Headphones
Etchings of the Dyson air-purifying headphones from the patent, Source: Dyson Ltd.

Dyson's patent explained exactly how the headphones will operate:

"Both earcups contain a motor that's connected to a fan-like propeller measuring 35-40mm. Each spin at about 12,000 rpm to draw about 1.4 liters of air per second into the headphones through a filter that particles -- typically dust and bacteria, although not specified in the patent -- cannot penetrate. The filtered air then journeys down each side of the mouthpiece, meeting in the middle, where a perforated air vent jets about 2.4 liters per second of clean oxygen toward the wearer's mouth."

It's hard to tell how loud the air purifier will be, something that may get in the way of music-listening. It could prove semi-productive for a pair of headphones. 

On the plus side, any user would have purer air as they walk around, something many nations could benefit from.

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A patent doesn't mean a product

Don't get too carried away quite yet though, as filing a patent, something Dyson does regularly, does not necessarily mean the gadget will see the light of day. 

"We’re constantly creating disruptive solutions to problems, which means we file a lot of patents," said a Dyson spokesman in an email to Bloomberg. "If and when a product is ready we’ll happily go through it but until then we don’t comment on our patents."

Dyson's headphones may never get onto the market, or onto your heads, but the patent does prove some interesting engineering and innovation is happening from within the Dyson lab.

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