Unveiling of a “Virus-Killing” Air Filtration System – Innovative Nanomaterial Kills Viruses, including Coronaviruses
Cambridge scientists and engineers have developed a new carbon-based air filtration nanomaterial that can capture and destroy a variety of viruses, including animal coronavirus, a close relative of – the virus that causes
A multidisciplinary team of researchers from the Boies Group in the Department of Engineering, as well as colleagues from the Department of Materials Science, worked on and tested the prototype.
This new conductive filtration membrane allows for simultaneous virus filtration and sanitization via thermal flashes generated by resistive heating to temperatures above 100°C, which deactivates viruses like betacoronavirus in seconds.
The multifunctional filter, according to the researchers, is especially useful in confined environments like emergency vehicles, hospitals, leisure, and education centers, where it can be used as a stand-alone unit or in conjunction with HVAC filtration systems to combat the viral spread of airborne diseases.
The findings, which include findings from virus infectivity trials backed up by theoretical modeling, were published in the journal Carbon.
The filter is part of a new class of conductive filtration mediums that can be mass-produced and have filtration efficiency and air permeability comparable to commercial HEPA (high-efficiency particulate air) filters.
It effectively captures respiratory liquid droplets, which are produced by coughing, speaking, and breathing and remain suspended in the air for hours, migrating over tens of meters in confined environments, and are a carrier of many viruses, including coronaviruses.
High infection rates in enclosed and crowded spaces are caused by these respiratory particles.
The innovative carbon nanotube material is also a pillar of the ANAM Initiative, which is funded by the EPSRC and aims to unlock the commercial potential of carbon nanotubes.
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Several industrial collaboration projects have been launched with world-leading air filtration companies to incorporate this carbon nanotube material into cutting-edge applications to aid in the fight against COVID-19 and other airborne-based pathogens.
“To meet market demand, Q-Flo Limited, a University of Cambridge spin-off, is scaling up our unique process commercially to first…
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