Volatile organic compounds
When hazardous gases are produced by the vaporization of dangerous substances, volatile organic compounds (VOCs) are produced. Each year, huge amounts of VOCs are released by natural occurrences like wildfires. However, a significant percentage of the planet's overall VOC emissions are caused by industrial activities and other human-made processes.
VOCs are an important pollutant because of their contribution to the formation of ground-level ozone. When exposed to sunlight, VOCs in the air react with nitrogen oxides (NOx) and carbon monoxide (CO), forming tropospheric ozone (O3).
The ozone in the stratosphere, when occurring naturally, plays a critical role in protecting the planet as it absorbs harmful UV rays from the sun. These substances, however, can promote plant diseases, obstruct seed formation, and impair fertilization if they are generated at ground level.
IIn this challenge students will have to determine the place where to install the VOC sensor, as well as analyze the results obtained during the corresponding measurements.
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