Ozone’s Role in Atmospheric Cleansing
Because of its high reactivity and its ability to harm microscopic organisms, ozone has the reputation of being an air and water purifier, only some of which it deserves. A few commercial companies market air cleaners or air "fresheners" that are said to work by generating ozone. According to the National Institutes of Health, this is a potentially harmful idea. (National Institutes of Health, 2000) In order to generate enough ozone to be effective, such equipment has to produce dangerous amounts of ozone.
Whatever they are, the future effects of ozone must be predicted in light of changing concentrations of other chemicals and climate conditions in the atmosphere. The atmosphere is extremely complicated. Changes in the concentration of one chemical generally affect the concentrations of several others, often in very short spans of time, and this makes such changes difficult to predict and to track. Predicting tropospheric gas concentrations much beyond several years from now lies beyond the capacity of most computer models and even most computers. Achieving a thorough and complete understanding of surface ozone chemistry presents a multitude of challenges.
The Ozone We Breathe