We must never again take our indoor air quality for granted, writes Deirdre Devitt of Novaerus At McGreals.
As the focus switches to vaccination and getting back to normal, there are many aspects of this pandemic we can’t wait to leave behind – others are here to stay.
Thankfully, awareness of the quality of indoor air we breathe is one of the latter.
We now know that viruses including Covid-19 are transmitted along air currents, where tiny ‘aerosol’ particles spread over long distances and can cause infection.
Airborne transmission is especially prevalent in cold weather, when we spend more time indoors, and in rooms or buildings that are badly ventilated. Does that ring a bell?
Ultimately, protecting yourself from viruses means protecting the quality of air you are breathing. This is a bigger and longer-term issue than just Covid-19 – remember, when that virus is finally behind us, we’ll still have mumps, measles, TB, superbugs, asthma, flu, the common cold, swirling around in our breathable air.
While opening a window seems like the simplest solution, unfortunately that doesn’t solve the problem. Opening a window often just moves the same pockets of ‘dead’ or infected air around a room.
A more technological solution is required.
Choosing the right solution can be confusing, however, with lots of companies claiming their product can ‘kill’ viruses like Covid-19 but offering precious little evidence to back up their claim.
To cut through the noise you should ask two questions, the first of which is:
What is the science?
Technologies that use chemical processes generate by-products, which are often harmful, so they must meet EU biocidal regulations.
Technologies that emit by-products include: Photocatalytic oxidation; UVGI cleaning; Sanitization misting; and Ozone.
However, physics-led technology, such as Novaerus NanoStrike, kills and deactivates all airborne micro-organisms on contact, without producing any harmful by-products. This is the Novaerus USP, what makes us the gold standard of clean air technology.
Although completely safe to use around people, Novaerus is also the most efficient technology in terms of the time it takes to kill airborne pathogens.
In fact, NanoStrike technology is the only technology that successfully kills pathogens in the sub-second time frame (i.e. microseconds or milliseconds) compared to UVGI (seconds-minutes), autoclave, ozone, chemical misting (minutes-hours), ionization and PCO (hours-days).
The second question to ask is:
What is the proof?
This really separates the wheat from the chaff. Companies make bold claims (eg ‘Confirmed to kill Covid-19’) that lead people to believe their devices are completely safe and effective.
But these companies often cannot back up their claims with scientific evidence. Where is the device manufactured? What certification does it have? Does it meet EU biocidal laws?
Novaerus devices are engineered here in Ireland. Our laboratory is staffed by world-class scientists, microbiologists and engineers, who spend countless hours studying and evaluating data and meeting customers to ensure products deliver maximum efficiency.
Novaerus devices have been independently tested in more than 30 international laboratories, including the US Aerosol Research and Engineering Laboratories. These trials have independently proven that Novaerus NanoStrike technology kills 99.99 per cent of MS2 Bacteriophage, a surrogate for SARS-CoV-2, the virus that causes Covid-19.
Recently, the Novaerus Defend 1050 became the first ever system using NanoStrike technology to be cleared by the US FDA (Food & Drug Administration) to inactivate and filter out micro-organisms, including virus and bacteria, for medical use.
The bottom line
This proof, this scientific backing, is vital. Because if we’ve learned anything these past few, painful months, it’s that we will only get back to normal in a safe, controlled way.
To return to work, school, socializing and other indoor gatherings, we don’t just need to disinfect the air – we need to do so using technology that has been proven safe.
This is a people issue. It is people, after all, who contaminate indoor spaces so the focus of any air dis-infection must be on protecting people and their breathable air within those spaces.
Novaerus NanoStrike technology is the ultimate protection, powerful but safe to use around people, even the most vulnerable people, on a 24/7 basis. Novaerus portable air disinfection devices can be plugged in and moved from room to room, with the smaller models using less energy than a 40-watt light bulb.
If you’re ready to make clean, disinfected air a priority, here’s what you need to know.
The Safe-Air Code
- Understand the technology: You’re looking for a safe technology offering air disinfection and virus destruction, with no by-products
- Look for proof: You’re asking questions about the scientific testing that proves the device works. If the data is not available, ask why not?
- Compare and contrast: You’re doing your research and always comparing like with like in technology terms, eg not ozone vs plasma or PECO vs misting
- Cover all bases: Consult the list of competing clean-air technologies in the Compare Your ‘AIR’ technology check list
- Make clean air a priority: From now on, you are prioritising clean, disinfected air to prevent transmission of airborne viruses including Covid-19. Time to clear the air, for once and for all.
Deirdre Devitt is CEO of Novaerus At McGreals