Meet the Dyson Zone: air purifying headphones six years in the making

Dyson Zone air purifying headphones

Dyson’s first foray into the wearable technology sector has come in the form of the Dyson Zone, a set of over-ear headphones with a visor over the mouth designed to deliver purified air to the user, with availability expected by the fourth quarter of the year.

Born as the result of more than a decade of air quality research, six years of development and over 500 prototypes, the Dyson Zone aims to provide a solution to both air quality and noise pollution. The headphones component includes active noise cancelling to help block out external sounds, while the visor delivers clean air without making full-face contact.

Dyson referenced research from the World Health Organisation (WHO) in the Dyson Zone’s announcement, suggesting that 9-in-10 people across the world breathe air exceeding the global health authority’s guideline pollutant limits. Dyson added that millions of people encounter long-term noise exposure above WHO’s guidelines, providing context for the two-in-one device.

How the Dyson Zone works

How the Dyson Zone’s purifier works is via a compressor in each earcup of the headphones. These compressors draw air through dual-layer filters fitted within the headphones, with one component a negatively-charged electrostatic filter capable of capturing ultrafine particles like allergens, and another potassium-enriched carbon layer able to collect gas pollutants. From here, the compressor funnels the purified air towards the wearer’s nose and mouth through the contact-free visor.

Dyson Zone lab testing

Alongside extensive testing of the ideal foam and materials for the headphones aspect of the Dyson Zone, the company’s engineers also enlisted a breathing mannequin to test the purification process. They fitted the mannequin with medical-grade mechanical lungs and sensors to resemble human breathing in order to assess how much pollution was absorbed throughout the development process. We haven’t seen any specific references to whether the Dyson Zone is effective against our current big concern – virus particles.

Other than an expected release window between Q3-Q4, few other details about the Dyson Zone are currently available, including full specifications and expected pricing points. Regardless, it’s a fascinating piece of technology in concept if nothing else – how many people will embark upon the highway to the Dyson Zone remains to be seen.

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