This computer's just dusty, but same idea.
Dave Kirkham
This computer’s just dusty, but same idea.

The cloud of pollution that’s hovering over Asia isn’t just messing with the insides of the humans living there. Computers in Asia are getting the electronic equivalent of smokers’ lung, the Oregonian reports:

“We got the board and it was pretty obvious. You open the chassis up and you see blackish material on every type of surface,” said Anil Kurella, the Hillsboro material scientist who’s leading Intel’s research effort.

The problem is that the residue from pollution sidles into the computer and concentrates there. Sulfur, in particular, is pouring out of coal factories and, eventually, corroding the wires of fancy electronics.

Intel’s solution isn’t to fight back against pollution, but to make more of it; the company is manufacturing pollution in the lab so it can try to protect its products from the negative effects. Too bad that’s not possible for human lungs.