NASA scientist creates chilling video to get Brits to clean up their laundry habits

A former NASA scientist has created a chilling video showing the harrowing effect that a harmful chemical has on plants and flowers.

Dr. Kyle Grant’s experiment involved taking an identical floral arrangement inspired by Van Gogh’s Sunflowers; treating one with drinking water and the other with H2O contaminated with perchloroethylene -  a colourless liquid which is classified by the International Agency for Research on Cancer (IARC) as a "likely human carcinogen".

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The time-lapse videos show the devastating effect the chemical, known as PERC has - as the vibrant yellow blooms began to show signs of attack in a matter of hours.

PERC is still used daily in the UK, despite being banned recently in California  France and Denmark, due to the concerns that come with using it.

Data from Oxwash, 84 per cent of Britons are in the dark about its health implications.

According to the study, over three quarters (79 per cent) of the 2000 respondents polled agreed they had little understanding of its effects on the environment.

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Former Nasa scientist and Oxwash founder, Dr Kyle Grant, created a live experiment.

Involving a pair of identical floral arrangements – based on the Dutch artist’s widely-acclaimed Sunflowers – they were put in identical conditions for 4 days, receiving the same amount of light and liquid.

The only difference was that one of the strikingly familiar arrangements was in a vase with contaminated PERC, while the other included tap water.

The amount of PERC used was equivalent to the amount used to dry clean 5 suits -  35ml - with the dramatic effects filmed in time lapse over the 96 hours.

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The arrangement polluted with the likely carcinogenic solvent started to show noticeable signs of struggle after just 2 hours 45 minutes. And became lifeless after 1 day, 23 hours and 55 minutes.

In contrast, the Sunflowers in the clean water vase, only showed their first signs of wilting at 12 hours and 5 minutes, and remained alive throughout the duration of filming.

Experiment 1: SUNFLOWERS



Moment flowers started to droop

25 April - 14.10 - 2 hours 45 mins

25 April - 23.30 - 12 hours 5 minutes

Moment first stem hit ground

25 April - 23.30 - 12 hours 5 minutes


Moment all stems hit ground

27 April - 11.20 - 1 day, 23 hours, 55 minutes

Did not die in the duration of filming - 4 days.

The experiment was commissioned after the new study uncovered that up to 2.26* million litres of the liquid gets used in the UK each year.

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Accounting for 80% to 85% of all dry cleaning fluids used by conventional dry cleaners to clean garments, the data also revealed one in five (20%) Brits are unaware that the term used to describe this popular method of cleaning clothes is actually a misnomer.

With such videos, the Oxwash CEO hopes to get us thinking about how we can slow down this “natural a’perc’alypse, by cleaning up our laundry habits” in an effort to take a “load off the planet.”

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