Are anti-viral air cleaners with UV technologies effective at reducing transmission?

by | Oct 5, 2022 | Advice for employers/decision makers, Preventing the spread of respiratory viruses | 0 comments

Air cleaning devices using UV-C technologies are likely to be beneficial for reducing transmission risk. Enclosed devices work in a similar way to HEPA filters, and you can choose which type of device is right based on the same principles.

We have known for decades that UV light in the UV-C range of the electromagnetic spectrum kills germs and can be used to reduce the spread of viruses and bacteria. Most devices use UV-C light at a wavelength that is harmful to skin and eyes. The device must be enclosed or located above head height so there is no direct exposure.

There is evidence that devices based on a new UV technology using a lower wavelength (Far-UV) are also effective and safer for human exposure than traditional UV-C devices. Far-UV devices must be designed and installed by professionals and checked to ensure that UV exposures are within internationally recognised safety limits.

UV devices only act on microorganisms, so do not have additional benefits of reducing exposure to other airborne particles that HEPA filter devices do.


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