Covid-19: Startup ties up with UN for multipurpose decontamination device

Covid-19: Startup ties up with UN for multipurpose decontamination device

Kochi: A startup based in the South Indian state of Kerala has come up with an agile multipurpose decontamination device that can sanitize items ranging from N-95 masks to vegetables, thus checking the spread of Covid-19.

‘Lumos’ has been designed specifically to address the coronavirus pandemic, but the certified UVC medical-grade disinfection system can also kill an array of pathogens. These include SARS-CoV, MERS-CoV, germs causing different types of influenza and MS2 bacteriophage besides several strains of bacteria and fungi.

Designed by ‘Devaditek Innovations’ at Maker Village, Kochi, the hardware startup has begun production and is getting ready for supply to various institutions and hospitals across the state. Lumos, which collaborates with the Collegiate Congress under the United Nation’s Master Plan initiative, is also being distributed overseas where the pandemic has hit the hardest. The first lot is getting shipped to five countries — Mali, Ecuador, Zimbabwe, Ghana and Haiti — with the support of the Collegiate Congress of the UN Master Plan.

“We’ve been receiving orders from within the country and abroad,” says Sumith C Mohan, Director, Devaditek. “We are planning to ramp up the production after completing the initial shipment.”

Lumos has a minimal design with intuitive interface and claims zero consumables and low power consumption. “Such products will be instrumental in our fight against the pandemic on a long-term basis. This is part of a series of hardware products getting developed at Maker Village in the context of the pandemic,” said Maker Village CEO Prasad Balakrishnan Nair.

The design of Lumos have been a collaborative effort of doctors, healthcare professionals, engineers and innovators. The chamber uses UVGI (ultraviolet germicidal irradiation) technology for disinfection. UVGI uses ultraviolet light to inactivate pathogens. UVGI systems are relatively quick and easy to use, and do not leave chemical residues or risk exposing users to toxic chemicals.

The prime objective of Lumos is to prevent the spread of nosocomial infections during Covid-19. Regular use of the chamber to disinfect personal belongings of healthcare professionals such as mobile phones, wristwatches, stethoscopes and N95 masks in the isolation wards or nurses’ stations will help prevent infectious breakout within a healthcare facility.

Short and thorough, the disinfection cycle does not need pre- or post-processing. It is benign to electronics, giving Lumos an edge over existing sanitization protocols.

Lumos application is not limited to clinical environments. Manufacturers have also designed chambers of different features and volumes suitable for offices and homes. The device can swiftly disinfect facial masks, documents, laptops, cell phones and dongles, take-outs, parcels, stationery and wallets.

The high-power lamps, coupled with the ozone functionality, can deliver 100 per cent disinfection rate in a short period of time. Unlike traditional methods of disinfection used in hospitals, UVGI is sustainable and non-toxic for the environment.

Lumos can also sanitize household utensils, fruits, vegetables and toys. Decontamination chambers are also available for banks and public offices such as ATMs, post-offices for sanitizing mails and currencies. The company has also released a low-cost mobile battery- powered unit.

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