UV disinfection systems have come to the forefront in the fight against the global pandemic of coronavirus. In this blog, we will try to breakdown the science behind why UV-C is being trumpeted as the go-to disinfection system not just in India but across the world but also how UV-C light works in killing the coronavirus.
What is UV Light?
Ultraviolet (UV) light is a part of the electromagnetic spectrum of light emitted from the sun. It falls between the region of visible light and X-rays based on its wavelength.
Within this ultraviolet spectrum, there are three sub-bands:
- UVA: This component of UV light makes up the majority of the UV light reaching the Earth’s surface, and is known to be responsible for about 80% of skin aging.
- UBV: This component of UV light has the capability to damage the DNA in our skin, causing sunburn, and then, eventually skin cancer.
- UVC: A relatively unknown part of the UV radiation, it consists of shorter and more energetic particles of light that are extremely effective at killing and/or damaging genetic material, thereby making it an effective tool for sanitization purposes.
About ten percent of light emitting from the sun is UVC but only about three to four percent penetrates the atmosphere to reach the surface of Earth.
And of this small percentage, 95 percent is UVA and five percent is UVB.
Hence, almost negligible germicidal UVC from the sun reaches the Earth.
How does UV-C Disinfection Work?
After years of research, it has been found that any genetic material, when exposed to UVC light with peak wavelength of 254nm, absorbs the light in its DNA, RNA and proteins.
This absorption leads to damage in the cell walls, and eliminates its capacity to replicate and reproduce.
Cells that Cannot Replicate Cannot Contaminate
In the scientific community, it is commonly acknowledged that the key is stopping the replication process of the pathogen, not it’s killing.
Luckily for us, the UV doses necessary to prevent replication are extremely lower than those required to kill the pathogen, hence making the cost of UVC Treatment lower and more commercially viable.
UV-C Technology Against Coronavirus
As described above, the technology has germicidal properties against all kinds of microbes, bacteria, pathogens and viruses.
Specifically speaking, for the coronavirus family of viruses – UVC technology is successful in killing the virus with an efficiency of 99.99%. It has been tested for the same by world-renowned health institutes like Nebraska Medicine and Stanford Medicine, and is also recommended by CDC for disinfection against coronavirus.
It is due to these very properties of UV-C that it is being utilized for making disinfection and sanitization solutions world over.
While UV-C irradiation is only one amongst the many methods that can scientifically speaking, kill the virus – what makes UV-C special is that it is particularly safe and efficient for indoor sanitization.
Interested in purchasing UV disinfection systems for your workspace?