UVC lamps, designed to kill viruses in environment, now used at Thai hospitals

The third generation of UVC lamps, which emit ultraviolet light at wavelengths of 200nm to 280nm, are claimed to be 99.99% effective in killing pathogens, including COVID-19, in just three minutes were unveiled today (Thursday) by the faculties of Medicine and Engineering of Chulalongkorn University, the King Mongkut Institute of Technology’s northern Bangkok campus and Smile Robotics.

Prof. Dr. Somrat Jarulaksananant, of the Department of Anesthesiology at Chulalongkorn University, told Thai PBS that these third generation lamps, have been put on trial providing disinfection at several hospitals, with promising results and positive responses from the hospitals.

He said that the UVC light emitted from the lamps has killed pathogens, some of which are harder to be eliminated than coronavirus, on the floor and other surfaces and in the air about 50cm from the floor.

The third generation of the UVC light lamps are more effective than two earlier versions but, for human safety, they are often used to disinfect hospital wards when they are unoccupied before it is cleaned again with disinfectants.

Dr. Jenyuk Lowatcharin, of the Department of Environment at Chulalongkorn University, explained that the intensity of the UVC radiation falling onto target surfaces are instrumental in wiping out the germs.  “If the radiation is more intense, it will take less time to kill the germs,” said Dr. Jenyuk.

COVID-19 can be easily killed in the environment, as has been widely proven by the first two versions of the UVC lamps, but the latest innovation is much better and reduces the time needed to kill pathogens, they are portable and remote controllable, said Dr. Jenyuk.

He also said, however, that the UVC light bulbs used in the lamps may emit ozone gas, which could have an effect on certain exposed materials, adding that researchers are working on other light bulbs, which are as effective at killing germs, but more environment friendly.

Any hospitals interested in the new lamps can contact the Department of Anesthesiology, Chulalongkorn University, on 02 2564000 ext. 81513.


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