In Brazil, some billboards do more than advertise new television shows and fast food. They can also kill disease vectors. The Mosquito Trap Billboard, a new project from the advertising agencies Posterscope and NBS, is aimed at combating the spread of viruses like Zika, which can cause severe birth defects. It’s designed to trap and kill Aedes aegypti, the type of mosquito that transmits dengue, Zika, and other deadly diseases. 

To simulate the aromas of a human breathing and sweating, the billboard emits a combination of lactic acid and carbon dioxide, attracting the pests from up to a mile and a half away. When mosquitos get too close, they get sucked inside the billboard, where they become trapped and die. 


Image Credit: Posterscope

Two of the billboards have been installed in Rio de Janeiro, where international officials are particularly worried about Zika spreading during the 2016 Summer Olympics, hastening its reach across the world. At least 1.5 million people in Brazil have contracted the Zika virus since 2014, according to The New York Times. The plans for the billboard are online [PDF] for anyone who wants to recreate the project elsewhere in the world. 

[h/t The Verge]

Banner image via YouTube