Jul 12, 2021

Advertisement articles published in the LD+A eReport do not necessarily reflect the views of the IES nor do they represent an endorsement by the IES.

Sponsored By: GE Current, a Daintree company

By Gregg Roberts, Product Manager, GE Current, a Daintree company

As more restrictions related to the COVID-19 pandemic are being lifted, people are beginning, albeit slowly, to return to the office. The more employees that return to the office, the more companies find themselves wondering how to provide an adequate working environment for their teams in a world where the pandemic is still on everyone’s mind.

UVA and UVC lighting solutions are potential tools in a multi-layered approach to disinfection. After all, UV lighting has been proven in laboratory tests to reduce viruses in the air and reduce bacteria and fungi on surfaces. That sounds like a potential method to help reduce pathogens in an area but be aware: Not all UVA and UVC products are created equal (or can be applied equally). If the products are not compliant with IEC 62471 Photobiological Safety for Lamps and Lamp Systems standard and American Conference of Governmental Industrial Hygienists (ACGIH®) TLVs® for human exposure to UV, they may not operate within the recommended safety limits for human exposure.

At GE Current, a Daintree company, we work hard every day to ensure that our UVA and UVC lights comply with those standards and others, and we are constantly working to ensure our products use the most up-to-date technology. In fact, we are currently improving our 365DisInFx™ offerings—including the addition of the RVU, which is a recessed version for retrofit applications—adding to our already formidable portfolio of 365DisinFx™ products. The RVU recessed luminaire retrofit kit with integrated 365DisInFx™ UVA technology is the first UL-certified UV LED disinfection retrofit kit under UL 8802, Outline of Investigation for Germicidal Systems. Our commitment to innovation backed by science means you can have confidence that our 365DisInFx UVA and UVC products employ proven and groundbreaking technologies.

What Is UVA and UVC Lighting?
UVA solutions can help reduce bacteria and fungi on surfaces. 365DisInFx™ UVA disinfection technology was tested using in vitro methods which resulted in 99.7% reduction in MRSA on surfaces exposed to 3W/m2 of 365nm UVA over a single 8-hour period. Results of this testing also showed significant reduction over a similar exposure period of certain common pathogens including Staphylococcus aureus, Enterococcus faecalis, Escherichia coli, Acinetobacter baumannii, Pseudomonas aeruginosa, Candida albicans and auris, associated with hospital-acquired infections (HAIs). Photobiological science and mathematical modeling enables us to calculate expected inactivation rates for 24-hour continuous operation of the 365DisInFx™ UVA technology.

UVC solutions can help reduce viruses in the air. GE Current, a Daintree company, has completed in-situation testing of its 365DisInFx™ UVC disinfection technology LPU series devices utilizing the aerosolized virus, bacteriophage MS2.

Bacteriophage MS2 is a nonenveloped virus that is commonly used in testing as a surrogate for viruses that are pathogenic to humans. It is particularly useful as a surrogate because published scientific testing and literature supports that bacteriophage MS2 is more resistant to UVC than certain enveloped viruses such as coronaviruses and influenza[i].

Based on photobiological science and mathematical modeling, Current anticipates equivalent or better results for seasonal coronaviruses and SARS-CoV-2. When properly installed and configured for the space, continuous operation of the  365DisInFx™ LPU should provide 50% inactivation in the first hour of exposure, 90% inactivation (1 log) in 3 hours or less of exposure, and 99% inactivation (2 log) in 6 hours or less of exposure. Current continues to conduct additional confirmatory testing.

Disinfection for Workspaces
TC Dental Partners, a Cordental Group practice in West Des Moines, Iowa, wants patients to have fewer concerns about germs. Active virion can be spread throughout a room during dental procedures―some virion can linger in the air for hours. Identifying a strategy for reducing airborne and surface pathogens was of the utmost importance.

Gregory F. Ceraso, DMD, had two criteria for a winning solution:

“Current’s disinfection lighting, I believe, adds another layer of protection for our patients, my team and myself,” Ceraso said.

Current’s 365DisInFx™ UVA LBU luminaires look and function like ordinary LED lights but offer far more with UV disinfection that helps reduce bacteria and fungi on surfaces. At TC Dental, the LBU luminaires were installed in suites along with 365DisInFx™ UVC LPU devices from Current to inactivate aerosolized viruses. While these devices are not intended to disinfect medical equipment, they can be used in workplace settings as supplementary tools to inactive airborne and surface pathogens.

Resembling a standard smoke detector, the LPU uses LEDs to emit viricidal UVC light. Each unit offers roughly 50 square feet of coverage, and multiple units can be configured as needed for the room size..

Backed by breakthrough patented and patent-pending technologies, these disinfection solutions are designed to assist customers in developing an overall disinfection strategy. Current’s UVA technology has shown significant reductions in common surface pathogens in a typical room application, while Current’s UVC technology targets the inactivation of aerosolized viruses, including seasonal coronaviruses and influenza in a typical room application.

Ceraso likes that Current’s lights can work continuously, do not require additional staff time to accomplish their goal and operate within recommended limits for human exposure to UV.

“Even subtle changes in light can affect how things look in the mouth, so the way a product works is very important to us,” Ceraso says. “These units are silent and emit UVA and UVC light that is invisible, so there’s nothing to distract us.”

Creating Cleaner Environments
Current’s UVA technology has been shown to reduce the presence of certain common bacteria by delivering a precise spectrum of light to surfaces that initiates the photoactivation of molecules found inside microbes. This process eventually triggers a photodegradation effect, destroying the cellular structure of pathogens.

To test its effectiveness, the UVA technology was installed in the neonatal intensive care unit (NICU) at Beacon Children’s Hospital in South Bend, Indiana. Dr. Robert White, director of the regional newborn program at the hospital, was originally contacted about the opportunity by the Lighting Research Center (LRC), an organization he had collaborated with several times over the years to uncover ways to create improved NICU environment for babies.

“A UVA device seemed like an optimal strategy for disinfection while the patient and other caregivers were present,” he added. “It was a no-brainer for me. It was a way we could use UV light and keep people in the room and keep our space even cleaner than we had previously.”

The UVA lights were installed to focus on sinks and counter surfaces in six of the facility’s 39 NICU rooms. Two circuits were used: white light from conventional LEDs and the UVA LEDs that were programmed to run for a maximum of eight consecutive hours.

Short blackout curtains also were installed around the lights to limit the exposure to patients as an extra precaution.

Current’s UVA technology was tested using in vitro inoculated culture plates. The NICU specifically looked at the lighting’s effect on staph aureusE. coli and Enterococcus faecalis—bacteria that pose significant threats to its patients.

Results of the analysis showed a significant reduction in the presence of these pathogens compared to the culture plates and surfaces not being treated.

“It’s a conclusive argument that these lights do work on the organisms that are of the greatest interest to us, not just on any bacteria that might be causing a change,” White stated.

For more information, visit Current’s 365 DisInFx UVA and UVC lighting products website and learn more about Making an Informed Decision[ii].

Footnotes
[i] GE Current, a Daintree company, has completed in-situation testing of its 365DisInFx™ UVC disinfection technology LPU series devices utilizing the aerosolized virus, bacteriophage MS2.

This benchmark testing with the bacteriophage MS2 resulted in 88% inactivation of the aerosolized virus in a 10-by-10-by-8-foot room within 4 hours. Applying the test results to 24-hour continuous operation of the 365DisInFx™ LPU would result in 44% inactivation of bacteriophage MS2 in 2 hours.

Bacteriophage MS2 is a nonenveloped virus that is commonly used as a surrogate for viruses that are pathogenic to humans. It is particularly useful as a surrogate because published scientific testing and literature supports that bacteriophage MS2 is more resistant to UVC than certain enveloped viruses such as coronaviruses and influenza.

Based on photobiological science and mathematical modeling, Current anticipates equivalent or better results for seasonal coronaviruses and SARS-CoV-2. When properly installed and configured for the space, continuous operation of the 365DisInFx™ LPU should provide 50% inactivation in the first hour of exposure, 90% inactivation (1 log) in 3 hours or less of exposure, and 99% inactivation (2 log) in 6 hours or less of exposure. Current continues to conduct additional confirmatory testing.

[ii] UV radiation can pose a risk of personal injury. Overexposure can result in damage to eyes and bare skin. To reduce risk of overexposure, equipment must be installed in accordance with site planning and application recommendations.

UV solutions are intended for common high traffic spaces and not recommended for dwellings or home use.

Installation of the devices should be performed by qualified professionals as detailed in Current’s installation guide.

To allow for occupancy, Current products comply with IEC 62471 Photobiological Safety for Lamps and Lamp Systems standard and American Conference of American Hygienists (ACGIH®) TLVs®

Current’s UV products are meant to be used in conjunction with other protective measures like manual cleaning and the use of proper PPE. They are not a substitute for other measures.

Current products are not intended to be used as a medical devices.

When combining two or more UV solutions, whether from GE Current, a Daintree company and/or other manufacturers, please consult a trained product application representative to ensure the total irradiance (UV dose) does not exceed recommended human exposure limits. To the extent UV solutions are combined, it may affect the deactivation rates. To the extent UV solutions are combined, it may impact inactivation rates.