Amsterdam Airport Schiphol is conducting a pilot to reduce ultrafine particles on the airport's apron


During the test, air will be cleaned by an innovative installation that has been installed next to Pier D. Schiphol is piloting the air filtration system, known as the Cirqulair,  as part of a drive to improve working conditions at the airport.

The special air filtration device, developed by local firm Van Wees Innovations, creates airflows that cause ultrafine particles to clump together and form larger particles that can be filtered.

Last year, Schiphol successfully piloted the same device at a fire station next to the runways. The device cleaned the air almost completely, but because the building is in use 24 hours a day, with windows and doors being opened, the reduction of particles came to an average of 75%, the airport said.

Patricia Vitalis, executive director Schiphol Operations at Royal Schiphol Group, said: “Everyone has the right to a healthy place of work. That's why we keep on developing and investigating ways to improve the air quality on the apron. This innovation is new in the aviation sector. We’re also thinking outside the box, doing experimental research and looking at promising solutions used in other sectors.”

Schiphol wants to offer employees a healthy workplace and improve the quality of life in the local environment. To achieve that, the concentrations of ultrafine particles at Schiphol must be reduced. The airport is therefore busy implementing the requirements set by the Netherlands’ Labour Inspectorate. These include introducing a green zone around the piers, within which plane engines may no longer start up, by the end of 2027 at the latest. Together with partners from the TULIPS consortium, Schiphol is also advancing research into the use of mist to remove ultrafine particles from the air. Furthermore, modified departure procedures have been introduced at two gates with high concentrations of ultrafine particles .

Van Wees Innovations’ Cirqulair
Van Wees Innovations’ Cirqulair Royal Schiphol Group