Scientists all around the world have unanimously agreed and accepted that Ultra Violet radiation from the sun is the primary disinfectant in the environment. Sunlight or, more accurately, solar UV radiation (UV) serves as the environmental primary natural virucide. We have learned of sunburn quite frequently.
It is not a burn from acute exposure to a hot stove or an open flame; instead, it is ultraviolet light-induced radiation damage. Such exposure to the sunlight in the short term is causing redness, discomfort, and peeling. The same UV light, UV-C radiation with a wavelength between 200 and 280 nanometers, can manipulate and use the very DNA of human skin in a matter of minutes to destroy germs.
Affecting pathogens with UV lights
The three primary UV-ray forms are UVA, UVB, and UVC. Since UVC rays have the shortest wavelength, and therefore the highest intensity, they can kill bacteria and viruses, also known as pathogens. The UVC light is highly effective in decontamination, as it breaks the molecular bonds that bind together the DNA of these germs like viruses and bacteria, including so-called superbugs, which have established more excellent antibiotic resistance.
Scientists believe that ultraviolet light wavelength — labeled UVC — fastly destroys airborne flu viruses and poses no risk to humans. A safer and more successful means to diminish the spread and increase of airborne microbial disease would be to use the low-level UVC light overhead in public areas. In several studies (1), UVC light has resulted in destroying a common strain of flu virus, and it has been successful in destroying many microbes, including newly emerging strains.
Overcoming Limitations using UV
Researchers conclude the prospect of reducing the transmission by UV radiation of airborne microbes and respiratory viruses has been quite fruitful. They felt that although washing hands remains vitally necessary, transmission in all the cases is not prevented. They commented that vaccination and antiviral drugs are also relevant but have disadvantages again. Low-dose UV light appears to be safe and efficient. It has a benefit of inactivating many disease-causing viruses.
A sanitizing UV light device like Mobile Klean helps your clean surfaces. Desktops, door handles, sinks, and toilets, or things that are always with you, like your cell phones, keys, etc. take advantage to cleanse through the device.
Boeing has also developed a concept for an airplane bathroom self-cleaning that utilizes UV light for disinfection after each use. Instead of those industrial applications, there is a lot of compact UV sanitizing bags, wands, and water bottles promising to kill 99.9 percent of bacteria and viruses on tablets, toothbrushes, pacifiers, and many other surfaces.
Advantages of UV Disinfectant
Protection of devices: The proposed disinfectant can mainly help to protect against diseases by disrupting the traditional pathways of transmission by touching door handles, mobile phones, laptops, etc. According to multiple studies, our phones or keyboards are about the dirtiest objects in our lives, harboring, on average, nearly 20,000 distinct types of bacteria. And while wiping down a keyboard, phones or electronic devices with soap and water or isopropyl alcohol might not be the best idea. Sanitizing using UV devices won’t damage the device but will eradicate bacteria and viruses, as long as the sanitizing of hardware is done regularly and adequately.
- UV radiation kills viruses by chemically modifying their genetic material, DNA, and RNA.
- UV light is quite effective in killing bacteria and viruses as the radiation destroys germs irrespective of drug resistance and without harmful chemicals.
- UV sanitation has been proven highly effective against even newly-emerging pathogen strains and comes in a variety of forms.
Hassle-free Decontamination: In comparison to other disinfectants, these devices neither use liquids nor moist cloths. The cleaning of viruses and bacteria work with these devices solely based on UV light. Hospitals have long adopted ultraviolet (UV) lights as a cleaning device, utilizing massive, and industrial-grade room decontamination machines. Now, smaller models of UV sanitation lights are available for consumers looking to clean practically everything from phones to toilet seats, laptop surfaces, cell cameras, door handle brushes, and many other items.
The viruses will live on other materials, including cardboard or metals, for several hours or even days, yet more alarming maybe the fact that viable viral agents can be detected in the air hours after a contaminated person sneezes and coughs. Thus ultraviolet light disinfection is a wise choice for anyone who may have to share air with potentially sick people.
These devices promise a success rate of almost 99.9% in contact with bacteria and viruses. However, this only applies to artifacts and does not clean the skin with short-wave UV radiation; however, it refers only to objects and does not disinfect your skin with short-wave UV radiation. The light is retained over the infected areas, and the unwanted micro-organisms will die off on their own.
What Studies Concluded on UV Decontamination?
- Disinfecting Robots
In early 2019, scientists of clinical microbiology in Denmark designed a robot aimed to reduce the likelihood of infections to be transmitted to patients in hospitals, which can be costly to treat and cause loss of life.
On instruction, the robot usually gave a voice command asking people around to leave the hospital room and close the door as they are starting a disinfection procedure. This robot, a self-driving device, has navigated a room in the simulated hospital, where it kills bacteria with an Ultraviolet Light zap.
Outside, from glass partition, the operators used to watch the glowing sabers with bulbs emitting concentrated UV-C ultraviolet light.
Scientists have claimed that if sufficient doses of UV light are administered in a reasonable period, then one can be reasonably sure of getting rid of the organism. Such robots are in tremendous demand after proving that they kill bacteria, viruses, and other dangerous microbes by destroying their DNA and RNA by emitting the maximum amount of ultraviolet light so that they can’t multiply.
There are also some water bottles and bottle caps that harness UV light in your water to destroy germs, minimize bad odors, and in some cases, make the water healthier for drinking.
- Reduction in Transmission
There was research involving 21,000 patients. They were kept overnight in a room where someone had already been treated with a disease. The result showed that in addition to conventional methods of cleaning drug-resistant bacteria, sanitizing a hospital room with a UV light cut transmission rate by 30 percent.
The UVC light was able to efficiently sanitize nooks and crannies, which are usually hard to clean. UVC light broke down the DNA code of pathogens, making it successful against superbugs.
- Elimination of Virus
A research carried out in 2017 found that 222 nm of UVC light destroyed bacteria just as effectively as 254 nm of UVC light that would be harmful to people. In the year 2018, the research on the virus (H1N1) showed that the UVC light with a narrow spectrum was successful at removing the virus too.
It has especially significant public health consequences, as the prospect of non-toxic overhead UV lighting in public spaces could dramatically reduce disease transmission.
- Purification using UV light
We first learned about the UV-C light’s disinfecting powers (UV with 200 to 280 Nanometers wavelength — and the same light that induces human sunburn and skin-cell mutations). In addition to surfaces, UVC light may also purify water – when properly used.
Companies selling pen-like UVC tools and UVC bottles assumed to get rid of viruses and bacteria up to 99.99 percent in water. Generally, these items are useful for hikers and travelers to remote areas, both of which experience unpurified water sources more frequently.
- Lethal to Bacteria
Medical professionals agreed that UV light, the kind used for cleaning household objects in most popular devices on the market, is successful in laboratory studies to destroy bacteria on computer screens, cell phones, toothbrushes, and other items. Viruses have also found to be affected in similar ways as bacteria.
Experts commented that the UV light is lethal to bacteria and viruses, because of its high frequency that scrambles and destroys their nuclear material and ultimately kills them. When it destroys the DNA code of these microbes, it often causes lethal mutations that stop them from adequately reproducing.
Scientists have heartily agreed that ultraviolet light and chemicals such as bleach or ethanol are equally effective methods for surface sanitization. Researchers indicated there are various techniques of cleaning mechanisms available in some cases, treatment with UV may be superior.
They firmly assumed that if used in airlines, restaurants, subway stations, and other places where people congregate, industrial UV-light devices could minimize disease transmission on a large scale. After this, and as a substitute to traditional disinfectants, it has been shown that many UV sanitizing devices operate on smooth, nonporous surfaces to kill bacteria and viruses.