The smell of rain comes from ozone in the air, and more...
Have you ever become aware of a pungent smell just before it starts raining? It's simply the smell of ozone, a gas consisting of molecules of 3 atoms of oxygen: O3. During storms, ozone is formed by lightning, which causes nitrogen and oxygen molecules to split. Air currents transport the ozone to lower altitudes where the rain has not yet reached; the smell forewarns of the arrival of the storm, or its proximity.
Many people notice a sweetish note in the smell of rain, which appears to come from resins and oils produced by plants, which are absorbed by soil and rocks, re-emerging when there is more humidity in the air.
But the predominant smell before or during storms, especially in less urbanised areas, is undoubtedly the earthy smell emanated by geosmin, an organic compound produced by certain organisms such as Streptomyces or cyanobacteria (green-coloured algae), both present in the soil. The human sense of smell is particularly sensitive to geosmin, and considerably more so when air humidity is higher.
Returning to ozone, its ability to purify air is particularly effective during storms, and it is most noticeable just afterwards. This remarkable natural phenomenon that gives us clean air can be recreated in the spaces where we live every day. Thanks to appliances like the JoyBion, indoor air can be sanitised with an ozonisation programme used when the space is unoccupied, which can eliminate bacteria and viruses present in the air and on surfaces. This procedure can be followed by the controlled bipolar ionisation provided by JoyBion to keep the air clean - this can be done when people are present - by emitting positive and negative ions in a controlled manner. The air you breathe will be as pure as the air in unpolluted nature!
To find out more about JoyBion ionizers, click here.