Germicidal ultraviolet light refers to short-wavelength ultraviolet radiant energy that has been proven to kill bacteria and inactivate viruses. GUV includes different types of ultraviolet light, based on their wavelength, which determines placement in the electromagnetic spectrum. Types of GUV include: UVA, UVB, UVC, Far UVC, and UVC-O. The different wavelengths have different germicidal properties. Wavelengths in the ultraviolet bands known as UVC and UVC-O, when combined, have been shown to be the most effective for disinfection of all microbes, especially hard-to-kill viruses, mycobacteria, and fungi.
Researchers and scientists have known for decades that germicidal ultraviolet light can kill up to 99.999% of pathogens like viruses and bacteria. The Center for Disease Control endorsed the use of GUV light in hospitals in the early 2000s, and subsequently FEMA endorsed it for use in buildings.
Viruses not considered living microorganisms, so you technically can’t "kill" them. But they are proteins with active RNA, so if you disrupt their RNA you can “deactivate" them. Germicidal UVC lamps deactivate up to 99.999% of most viruses. It has been proven to deactivate coronaviruses including SARS-CoV-1. UVA and UVB do not deactivate viruses.
Germicidal UV light works by breaking down the DNA of microorganisms and the RNA of viruses, making it impossible for them to reproduce.
There are no known long-term effects from accidental exposure to UV-C light. Precautions should be taken when using equipment, however. Just like overexposure to the sun results in sunburns, accidental exposure to UV-C light can result in short-term skin burns and short-term damage to the eyes. Essentially, germicidal UV lights should only be used when a space is vacant.
Standard UVC is extremely effective where the light hits the air or a surface directly. We use UVC plus UVC-O to ensure disinfection in in areas not hit directly by the light. UVC-O turns oxygen into ozone which is also a powerful disinfectant.
GUV light products vary by case-use. For offices, industrial spaces, and other large common areas, powerful UV lamps combining UVC and UVC-O are the best choice. The UV lamp is placed in a room for a set amount of time, depending on the size of the space, and then it is moved to the next room if necessary, and so on. This can be done in preparation for the reopening of your space, and periodically as an element of your ongoing cleaning protocol.
The required amount of GUV light will vary depending on the size and layout of your space. A viral irradiation room analysis indicates the dose necessary to sanitize that area.
We calculate this based on how long the ozone producing lamps were turned on.
Traditional spray companies may use toxins or other chemicals that have harmful health effects. Disinfection services are lightly regulated and can use cheaper chemicals that are neither effective nor safe. Even the better quality chemical disinfectants are not meant to be regularly sprayed on people’s workstations. Environmental health experts warn that risks rise sharply with increase in exposure, and recommend alternative methods.
In the rush to disinfect due to the coronavirus a lot of questionable safety claims are being made. The fact remains that very little research has been done on the long-term health effects of aerosolizing chemical disinfectants and releasing them into the indoor air that you breathe.
Companies can choose from hundreds of disinfectants that were recently place on “List N,” the months old compilation of products approved by the EPA for killing the coronavirus that causes Covid-19. This means they have been proven to kill the coronavirus, but they have not been tested for safety and the EPA makes no claim that they are safe for human health.
Hospitals use powerful disinfectants in order to kill. Treatment resistant superbugs such as MRSA, C. Difficile, and others. First off, hospital grade disinfectants are extremely expensive. Are spraying services that claim to use hospital grade really using 100% hospital grade, or are they diluting it with something else? It would be difficult to explain how they could compete on price using 100% hospital grade. Secondly, powerful hospital grade disinfectants have been proven to have negative health impacts on hospital workers who are consistently exposed to them.