Advantages of UV Sterilization | Disadvantages of UV Sterilization
This page mentions advantages and disadvantages of UV sterilization to combat viruses, bacteria, COVID-19 by UV Light disinfection. It mentions benefits or advantages of UV Sterilization and drawbacks or disadvantages of UV Sterilization.
We know the recent outbreak of COVID-19 caused by recently discovered coronavirus. It has been first observed in Wuhan city of China in Dec 2019. Coronaviruses are large family of viruses which may cause illness in humans or animals.
It causes respiratory infections ranging from common cold to more severe diseases such as MERS and SARS in human beings. The most common symptoms of COVID-19 are fever, fatigue and dry cough. Some patients may also have aches & pains, running nose, sore throat, shortness of breath, diarrhoea etc.
WHO and other medical ogranizations have urged people to follow certain guidelines to reduce the spread of COVID-19 virus. This include social distancing, wearing of face mask, washing hands frequently and so on. Inspite of all these precautions, COVID-19 spreads through touching of mobile phone, Door knobs and other essential household items. Hence it has become mandatory to sanitize these household items. One such efficient method to sanitise or disinfect these devices is to use ultraviolet (UV) light.
What is UV sterilizer ?
The UV sterilizer is the device which performs sterilization using Ultraviolet light rays. The UV light is invisible to us and it is further divided into three types based on its wavelength. The types are UV-A, UV-B and UV-C as shown in the figure.
UV-C occupy 100 to 280 nm in range. THe UV radiations at 265 nm or 254 nm is found to be very effective to kill the germs or viruses. It has been found during research that UVC (far ultraviolet C) exposed at particular wavelength can kill 99.9 % of coronaviruses which are present in the airborne droplets. Moreover this UVC rays are safe to use around the human beings.
UVC lights based devices are used for numerous applications such as to disinfect drinking water, air, pharmaceutical tools, to disinfect vegetables, fruits etc. To stop spread of COVID-19, UVC light based devices are used to disinfect mobile phones, surfaces, clothes, utensils, toys etc. There are number of UV based devices which include UV phone box, UV disinfection lamp, UV light wand steriliser, UV based robot and so on. Figure depicts UV based robot used in hospital to disinfect rooms and clothes of the COVID-19 patients.
Benefits or advantages of UV Sterilization
Following are the benefits or advantages of UV Sterilization:
➨UV sterilization devices are more efficient to disinfect than traditional cleaning methods.
➨UV sterilization does not require chemicals. Moreover this method does not leave any chemical residue on the target. Hence it is safe to use. Moreover it does not cause any harm to human beings.
➨UV sterilization is environment friendly method.
➨UV light disinfection method is dry method and hence it prevents growth of fungi very effectively.
➨UV light based sterilizers are cheaper in cost. Moreover they have longer lifespan.
Drawbacks or disadvantages of UV Sterilization
Following are the drawbacks or disadvantages of UV Sterilization:
➨UV sterilizers work effectively in its direct light path. It becomes ineffective when light is blocked by objects. Hence it has to be ensured that objects should be placed directly in the path of UV light. To minimize the problem, more number of UV bulbs are used in UV sterilizer to cover wide angle range.
➨UV light causes harmful effects to our eyes and skin. It often causes chronic eye damage. Hence UV light devices are not recommended to be used for sterilizing hands and skin.