Ozone is very versatile as an environmentally friendly oxidation agent. The spin-off company Oxy3, in collaboration with a research team at Montan University in Leoben, Austria, has managed to come up with a new ozone production method. The aggregate is simple to use and plugs into commonly available oxygen bottles. Ozone can be produced simply by pressing a button, in various concentrations; it's simple, effective, and portable. The advantage of Oxy3 lies in the fact that unlike existing generators which draw in air, it works with pure oxygen, explains Robert Hermann of Montan University. To use it, there is no need for electronic controls or a regulation unit, and thanks to its compact size there are no storage problems, explains Hermann. 'When the bottle is empty, it is exchanged for a new one by the gas supplier. Then the unit is screwed on and ozone can be produced right away,' he adds. 'Ozone is the most powerful oxidation agent known. You either pass it over the material to be treated or introduce it into a substance you want to change.' Uses of ozone are very diverse. 'It can be used anywhere pollutants and contamination need to be removed without forming further pollutants as a result.' Ozone is used for purifying water and air, as well as in laboratories; it can be used to clean swimming pools, and for purification of water supplies. In industry, it is mainly used for bleaching, disinfection, and oxidation. Info: http://www,oxy3.at (Umwelt Magazin, Germany, www.UmweltMagazin.de).