ECO3 Granules Bring Smog-Fighting Power to SOPREMA Membranes

09-19-2023 | Roofing, Media

Inspired by the power of trees, SOPREMA’s ECO3 granule surfaced membranes are a unique collaborative effort between 3M and SOPREMA for low slope roofing. This roofing granule is designed with a specialized photo-catalyst coating applied to the mineral that absorbs nitrogen oxide (NOx) gases in the atmosphere that are then cleaned and washed away by rainwater. This process drastically reduces the amount of ground level pollutants, decreasing the greenhouse effect and creating healthier communities. 

What are nitrogen oxides (NOx) gases?

Nitrogen oxide gases are harmful and irritating gases formed by the burning of fuels. These gases are emitted by many sources including cars, trucks, power plants and other industrial production processes and then released into the air. These gases react with VOCs (volatile organic compounds) in the atmosphere and sunlight to create what is commonly thought of as smog or ozone. These ground-level gases unhealthy for humans, animals and plants.

How does the smog-reducing granule work?

The smog-reducing granule is coated with a specialized photocatalytic coating. The photocatalyst reacts in the presence of ultraviolet light, like sunlight. This photocatalytic reaction absorbs the nitrogen oxides in the atmosphere and accelerates the oxidation process. The reaction then creates water-soluble ions that are washed away by dew or rainwater.

To prove the technology for use in roofing, Lawrence Berkley National Laboratory conducted a study validating the efficacy of the photocatalytic material in reducing smog and contributing towards air purification.

How effective are the smog reducing granules?

Every 3,000 square feet of ECO3 granule-surfaced membrane can offset the approximate emissions generated by driving 1,200 miles per year. This calculation varies depending on sunlight, humidity, and the abundance of NOx in the atmosphere.

For example, a 20,000 square foot commercial roof (200 squares) surfaced with ECO3 granule-surfaced membrane has the ability to offset approximately 8,000 miles worth of car emissions yearly. That is the power of approximately 120 trees!

To learn more about this air-preserving innovation, read our ECO3 Technology brochure.