Durst launches anti-Covid air system

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The latest Covid initiative from Durst sees the manufacturer of advanced digital printing and production technologies launch a Covid-countering air disinfection system: the Durst UVC-R. 

Anti-virus air purification: Durst UCV-R
Anti-virus air purification: Durst UVC-R

As early as April, during the lockdown, Durst had started the production of community masks as a first preventive measure. Now the company is stepping up its efforts and presenting an innovative solution for reducing the viral load in indoor environments, with the Durst UVC-R Air Disinfection System.

Matt Ashman, CEO of Durst Oceania, said, "It is being released in Europe firsty in limited numbers, and could be available here at the turn of the year. There will also be opportunities for printing graphics for the unit."

The UVC-R was developed in n the Durst Labs, where the main transmission paths and descent rates of droplets and aerosols that transport virus-containing liquid particles were analysed, as well as the effectiveness of countermeasures with continuous air exchange and UV irradiation. The main Durst factory is locate dnear the epicentre of the first European outbreak, in northern Italy.

The solution is the Durst UVC-R, which combines both air exchange and UV irradiation in one system. It effectively reduces infectious aerosols, viruses, and other germs in indoor environments. Through an antiviral membrane, the room air is led into a closed system and irradiated with UV-C light. The disinfected air is continuously released back into the room through an air outlet.

Durst says the new normality that shapes our private and professional life is determined by masks, distance rules and disinfectants. This situation will not change in the short or medium term. It says even if there will be a vaccine against Covid-19, new types of viruses and mutations will most likely occur. Therefore, over the past few months, Durst has put its expertise in the laboratories, in production, in UV technology, in flow simulations and in the safety guidelines together, to bring a piece of quality of life back to the new normality, with the Durst UVC-R Air Disinfection System.

Special features of the Durst UVC-R include closed, radiation-protected chambers with high-performance UV-C modules in airflow-optimised and mirrored channels. It generates ozone-free UV-C radiation with a wavelength of 254 nanometers. The unit has a typical noise level of 25 dB.

“We checked the efficiency of the UV-C sources in our laboratories and analysed the ideal exposure time and volumetric flow," Christoph Gamper, CEO and co-owner of the Durst Group said. “An external laboratory for medical technology and disinfectants in Germany is currently in the process of verifying our results. At the same time, the efficiency of the Durst UVC-R is tested in real mode with pseudoviruses or so-called bacteriophages.

The Durst UVC-R centre disinfection zone measures 4 x 4 x 2.5 metres. However, Durst points out that no specific statements about square meters or volume size can be given as a general answer in terms of efficiency, as the efficiency depends on many factors such as temperature, air flows in the room, ceiling height, number of people. Durst gives the following example for the efficiency: four people sit at a table and are surrounded by a volume of 8m³. Each person inhales and exhales about 0.5m³ of air per hour, a total of 2m³. Durst UVC-R disinfects 12.5 times this volume or 25m³ in 15 minutes and 50 times the breathing volume of four people or 100m³ in one hour.

If the UVC-R is placed in a larger room, a constant mixing of the room air around the disinfection centre is taking place, which means that by the permanent release of treated air the viral load is reduced even outside the central zone.

"We see in Durst UVC-R not only a preventive measure to reduce the viral loads," Gamper said. “Together with the South Tyrolean industrial designer Christian Zanzotti we have developed portfolio, that can harmoniously be integrated into many interior concepts. Furthermore, the anti-viral coated membrane can be personalised with our digital printing systems."

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