Efficacy of antimicrobial and anti-viral coated air filters to prevent the spread of airborne pathogens

Rowan Watson, Morwenna Oldfield, Jack A Bryant, Lily Riordan, Harriet J Hill, Julie A Watts, Morgan R Alexander, Michael J Cox, Zania Stamataki, David J Scurr, Felicity de Cogan

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Abstract

The COVID-19 pandemic has demonstrated the real need for mechanisms to control the spread of airborne respiratory pathogens. Thus, preventing the spread of disease from pathogens has come to the forefront of the public consciousness. This has brought an increasing demand for novel technologies to prioritise clean air. In this study we report on the efficacy of novel biocide treated filters and their antimicrobial activity against bacteria, fungi and viruses. The antimicrobial filters reported here are shown to kill pathogens, such as Candida albicans, Escherichia coli and MRSA in under 15 min and to destroy SARS-CoV-2 viral particles in under 30 s following contact with the filter. Through air flow rate testing, light microscopy and SEM, the filters are shown to maintain their structure and filtration function. Further to this, the filters are shown to be extremely durable and to maintain antimicrobial activity throughout the operational lifetime of the product. Lastly, the filters have been tested in field trials onboard the UK rail network, showing excellent efficacy in reducing the burden of microbial species colonising the air conditioning system.

Original languageEnglish
Article number2803
Number of pages12
JournalScientific Reports
Volume12
Issue number1
Early online date9 Mar 2022
DOIs
Publication statusE-pub ahead of print - 9 Mar 2022

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© 2022. The Author(s).

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