* Alcoa says titanium dioxide coating fights smog
* Plans to hit market by June
* DuPont, Huntsman, Tronox among large global Ti02 makers
NEW YORK, May 9 Alcoa Inc (AA.N) said it will
start selling an aluminum building panel that removes smog from
the air using a chemical commonly found in automobile paint.
Using a proprietary process developed with Japan's Toto
(5332.T), Alcoa said it turns fine grounds of titanium dioxide
into a clear paste then applies it the surface of aluminum.
The titanium dioxide interacts with sunlight and breaks
pollution in the surrounding air into carbon dioxide particles
that are washed away by rainwater, Alcoa said.
The panel is being tested currently and will hit the market
by June, Alcoa said. The product could eventually dominate the
European and North American aluminum construction market, which
is roughly 2.5 billion square feet per year, Alcoa said.
Titanium dioxide is a white pigment used as the building
block for most paints. It keeps paint bonded to a surface and
is commonly found on automobiles.
DuPont (DD.N), Huntsman (HUN.N) and Tronox TROX.PK are
among the world's largest producers. Alcoa declined to say
where it is getting its titanium dioxide.
The Pittsburgh-based company also said it is researching
how its technology could be used on cars to fight smog.
(Reporting by Ernest Scheyder, editing by Dave Zimmerman)