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Each year, Smogathon embarks on a quest to find world’s next superhero for the fight against smog. Despite not letting the issue out of our sight – which, to be fair, is not a tough task once the cold weather kicks in — we still haven’t found a one-fits-all solution for the overwhelmingly bad air quality in our cities. Thankfully, we won’t need to wait long for the next dose of hope: Smogathon is gearing up to award their next hero on November 19th.

We’re fighting against a global enemy,” explains Kamila Knap, the co-founder of Smogathon. “Innovation and technology offer quickly scalable solutions able to improve the quality of life right now, without the need to wait for politicians’ awakening. This is why we’ve chosen this form of fighting for clean air.”

One thing’s for certain — Smogathon’s past editions have brought some real innovators into the mainstream. The annual event familiarized the wider public with projects such as Airly, whose network of air quality sensors now stretches across over 1000 devices in Poland. The event’s previous iterations also helped popularize CityTree’s green IoT installations, and introduced Kaiterra’s domestic air monitors into our homes. Since then, Smogathon has gone global: this year’s finale in Cracow will see innovators from 9 countries competing for the main prize.

Smogathon becomes more international with each coming year, and reaches a wide range of recipients around the world, which is easy to notice by verifying the profile of our participants,” says Maciej Ryś, founder of Smogathon. “We try to ensure that the selected projects can solve the problem of smog not only in our city or country, but all over the world. We are very pleased that Krakow is becoming the leader of the fight for clean air.”

This time around, the innovators will compete for a prize of 30 thousand Dollars, as well as an additional implementation prize from the event’s partner Otrivin, set at 30 thousand Zloty. As for the finalists, Smogathon’s jury definitely has their work cut out for them — they’ll need to pick their winner from projects such as Airlab’s Airbubbl, which aims to filter the air for drivers stuck in traffic; SmogBusters — the inventor of affordable air purifier devices capable of replacing aircon systems; or Blue Sky Lab’s ATMOBLUE — a portable air purifier mask. The current list of finalists includes 12 international companies, but the crowds at the finale in Cracow will only see a lucky 6 of them on-stage. The rest of them will present their project during the Clean Air Expo set right before the event.

Best of luck to all of the finalists! We’ll be sure to report back once we find out which of the projects goes home with the prize. For more information about Smogathon, feel free to check out their website.