Microorganisms surround a person in everyday life everywhere: at home, at work, in public transport, in crowded places. Moreover, among microorganisms there are many pathogens. With a small accumulation of pathogenic viruses and microbes in the environment, the human immune system copes with them. When the concentration of pathogenic microorganisms becomes excessive, no immunity can withstand such an attack: an infectious disease occurs.
To avoid the disease in two ways: to increase immunity or reduce the concentration of microbes in the place of stay of the person. If the first task helps to cope with a healthy lifestyle, hardening, herbal remedies, immunomodulators, then the second one is more difficult to cope with. Airing, wet cleaning and disinfection only temporarily reduces the concentration of infectious agents. In some cases, it is not even possible to carry out these preventive measures, for example, in rooms where people are constantly present. How to get out of this situation?
One of the ways to effectively reduce the number of microbes in a room is to irradiate its bactericidal spectrum of light with the help of special devices — bactericidal irradiators.
Principle of operation
It is known that light waves of different lengths have different properties. Bactericidal properties of the ultraviolet (UV) beam of the light beam. Ultraviolet radiation is divided into 3 ranges: short-wave (100-280 nm), medium-wave (280-315 nm) and long-wave (315-400 nm).
Long-wave radiation affects the photochemical processes in the body - causes skin pigmentation. For disinfection purposes, this spectrum is useless.
The waves of the average length of the UV spectrum exhibit erythemal effects on the skin, promote the production of vitamin D in the skin, strengthen the immune system, excite the nervous system, increase the level of hemoglobin in the blood. This range is used in physiotherapy.
For disinfecting air with the help of UV radiation, its shortwave spectrum is important. However, short UV waves in contact with the retina damage it, which is dangerous by the development of various eye diseases. In addition, UV waves with a length of less than 200 nm have an ozone-forming ability: they interact with oxygen molecules to form ozone in air. In large quantities, ozone is detrimental to microorganisms and toxic to humans. Concentration of more than 0.22 mg of ozone per 1 cubic meter of air for humans is considered to be the maximum permissible.
The source of the ultraviolet spectrum of the short and medium ranges are germicidal lamps. To get rid of the ozone-forming range of UV radiation, germicidal lamps have been constantly improved since their inception.
History of creation
Back in 1801, a chemist from Germany I.Ritter discovered ultraviolet radiation, and in 1892 an English scientist G.Ward proved the bactericidal properties of this light range. In practice, the ultraviolet spectrum began to be used only in 1906, when German scientists Kech and Reschinsky created the first arc lamp made of quartz glass and mercury electrodes. For the first time this lamp was used in medicine for the treatment of psoriasis in 1926.
Since the first germicidal lamps were made of quartz glass, they were called "quartz". Over time, quartz glass was replaced by UVIOL, which reduced the ozone-forming radiation, but the historical name "quartz lamps" remained behind them. The glass of modern germicidal lamps is coated with titanium oxide, which completely absorbs the ozone-forming spectrum.
Types of irradiators
For ease of use germicidal lamps have been used in special irradiators. Bactericidal irradiators are:
- Open (open type).
- Closed (closed type) - recirculators.
- Combined (can be used as open or closed).
They differ in their device and method of irradiation of environmental objects, so their area of application is different.
Open type irradiators
Sources of UV radiation in open devices are not covered by anything. This makes it possible to disinfect the air and all surfaces at 360 ° from the lamp. Since ultraviolet waves propagate freely, people, animals and plants in the premises that are disinfected with an open irradiator are not allowed.
There are modified open-type irradiators with rotating lamps, or additionally equipped with a protective screen. When disinfecting with the help of modified open-type devices, people may stay in the room for a short time.
The danger of open source of UV rays is the reason for the limited use of open irradiators - only for strictly medical purposes (in operating rooms, manipulation laboratories). After disinfection using an open illuminator, the room must be thoroughly aired to remove ozone from it as much as possible.
Illuminators of the closed type
The source of UV rays in this device is inside the case. Air disinfection occurs inside the feed. He gets there forcibly - using the built-in fan. Inside bezel free bactericidal lamps are installed. Thus, the negative influence of UV-waves on humans, animals and plants is completely excluded, therefore closed-type irradiators can be used in rooms where people are constantly present.
Air disinfection can be carried out over a long period of time, and after the procedure, a mandatory ventilation of the room is not required. Such devices are allowed to be used both in medical premises and in office rooms, production halls and home conditions.
How to choose
When purchasing a bactericidal irradiator, you must be able to choose it correctly. In addition to the purpose, you should be guided by:
- The performance of the device. The performance of the irradiator is determined on the basis of the volume of the room (area in square meters, multiplied by the height of the walls in m). The maximum deviation of the factory performance of the irradiator from the actual volume of the room should not exceed 20%. Otherwise, disinfection will be ineffective.
- Installation method The irradiator can be wall-mounted or mobile (portable). Wall mounted devices are cheaper than mobile ones. Wall-mounted appliances are recommended to be installed at a height of more than 1 m from the floor, which must be considered before purchasing.
- Control system. Useful functions on UV irradiators are the determination of the state of the lamps, the monitoring of the hours worked, the timer, the delayed start. These options allow you to timely disinfect the premises and also maintain the device on time.
- Body material. The metal case of the device is more reliable and durable. The case material of the portable model is especially important because it is more susceptible to damage. Open UV rays are dangerous to humans, therefore, it is impossible to operate the device with a damaged case.
- Filtration system. Additional air filters remove dust from disinfected air. If there are air filters in the device, make sure that they are removable or removable. In the case of disposable disposable filters in the device, it is necessary to take care of their purchase in sufficient quantities.
- A complete set. In the box with a bactericidal irradiator, there must be an instruction and warranty card. The manual has a point with an indication of the product configuration. Before purchasing, you should check whether the actual equipment of the device corresponds to the one specified in the manual.
When purchasing an irradiator for home, one should prefer wall recirculators. They are more reliable and safe in operation, especially if children and pets live in the house.
Advantages of bactericidal irradiators
Indications for conducting air disinfection in residential premises using ultraviolet rays are:
- treatment of diseases of the upper respiratory tract (only as part of complex therapy);
- prevention of exacerbations of asthma and allergic diseases;
- prevention of recurrence of streptoderma and other purulent skin diseases;
- prevention of seasonal viral diseases;
- prevention of complications after surgery.
Bactericidal irradiators are useful in areas where people are often located. Their primary task is to destroy pathogens and eliminate the mechanism of their transmission. Using UV radiation, it is possible to kill up to 97-98% of viruses and up to 95% of vegetative forms of bacteria. Fungi and mold are less sensitive to UV, especially their spores.
Disadvantages of UV disinfection
The benefits of disinfecting indoor air are undeniable. However, bactericidal ultraviolet irradiators should not be taken as a panacea for all infections. Wet cleaning in the room and regular airing will not replace any disinfection.
Do not abuse decontamination. Sterile air of enclosed spaces is not only not useful, but also dangerous. Human immunity must constantly face infections in order to be in good shape. If there are few microorganisms in the environment, the immune system "relaxes" and stops producing protective antibodies. Getting into another environment that is saturated with all sorts of microorganisms, a person who has been in disinfected premises for a long time (often these are children of overly caring parents) easily becomes infected.
Improper disinfection in the room is fraught with the appearance of resistant strains of microbes in the air of the room, on which the usual mode of disinfection will not have any effect.
Ultraviolet rays are unsafe for human health, because they provoke the formation of toxic ozone. Any damage to the irradiator (housing, protective screen) can lead to a deterioration of health and other violations of the health status of people in the illuminated room.
The effect of ultraviolet radiation on the body is dangerous for patients with cancer, tuberculosis, acute inflammation, high blood pressure, pathologies of the thyroid gland, gastric ulcer and duodenal ulcer, renal or heart failure. Disinfection is not recommended in rooms where pregnant women and newborns are present.
To avoid possible health complications, before acquiring a domestic bactericidal irradiator, you should consult with your doctor, and before you begin using it, carefully read the instructions and complete all necessary installation requirements.