Frequently Asked Questions

Why is Far-UV important?

Far-UV (222nm) is important because it is the only technology that is available today that can continuously and effectively disinfect air and surfaces safely with people present.  When configured in a line-of-sight fashion the photons produced by Far-UV lamps can deactivate and destroy airborne pathogens at the speed of light.  All other technologies provide either for a moment in time capability (think Clorox wipes) or are dependent on air exchange rates (think HVAC and upper room UVC solutions).  If you have a classroom full of kids and one of them sneezes, you don’t have the luxury of waiting for an air exchange to protect the other kids from the aerosolized viral particles.  Far-UV when configured properly, can provide that level of protection.

What types of organisms can Far-UV inactivate?

Far-UV actually “deactivates” pathogens, that is it destroys pathogens. This is much more compelling than UVC which only “inactivates” pathogens which can then be reconstituted through a process called photo reactivation.  Far-UV is known to be able to deactivate most human pathogens including viruses, mold, bacterium, fungus, prions, and protozoa.

What are the best use-cases for Far-UV?

Best use cases of Far-UV are those instances where Far-UV can be used where other technologies cannot be used.  These include line of sight applications where people are present, agricultural applications where photo reactivation is a consideration, wound care, and skin disinfection where other wavelengths are not safe, and any disinfection application where the targeted pathogen is more susceptible to Far-UV than other technological interventions.

What are the pros and cons of Far-UV?

The pros of Far-UV are that the lamps themselves can be made to have tremendously long life (up to 30K hours and more), they can be powered up to and greater than 2kw, they can be configured to produce very little ozone, and they are not environmentally hazardous.  In fact, Far-UV excimer lamps, when designed properly, can be recycled at a fraction of the original cost.  But most importantly, Far-UV technology is a powerful tool in the battle against pathogens and has virtually unlimited applications because the 222nm wavelength is safe for human exposure.  The cons of the technology include the limited production of the lamps, perceived high cost of the lamps, and the lack of regulatory oversight of the quality and efficacy of the lamps.

Why has Far-UV not come to market sooner?

Actually, Far-UV as produced by excimer lamps has been available in different product profiles for over fifteen years.  Unfortunately, it has taken a pandemic for the technology to get the recognition it deserves.  Even today, Far-UV has a PR problem because government agencies have not looked at Far-UV to help solve many of the world’s problems, including the pandemic.  Our opinion is that it will not get truly widespread adoption until Far-UV is part of the commercial building codes, much like fire suppression technology.

How can Far-UV help expedite the return to normalcy?

Far-UV can help expedite the return to normalcy by demonstrating the efficacy of the technology in the form of widespread adoption.  We would have thought two years ago that 222nm technology would have been the next Manhattan project.  However, the Federal government never took notice.

What should consumers look out for when purchasing Far-UV devices?

Because of the lack of regulatory oversight and yet developed industry standards there is a lot of carnival barking and marketing of inferior products that tend to confuse and distract potential adopters.  Those standards are coming in to place gradually through organizations such as the IUVA, IES, EPA, and ACGIH.  Other organizations and agencies such as ASHRAE, OSHA, and the FDA need to step up their game and help recognize that 222nm technology is extremely important in the protection of the human race.  Consumers need to be on the lookout for companies new to the Far-UV business and for cheap imported products that don’t perform as advertised.

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