Aviation Clean Air (ACA) reported that in a second phase of testing, the needlepoint bi-polar ionisation (NPBI) technology behind its airborne and ground-use purification systems has demonstrated 99.99% neutralisation of the COVID-19 virus after 30 minutes.
The patented airborne system is certified by the FAA on numerous aircraft with STC. NPBI is ozone-free and passes the RCTA DO-160 standard for aircraft. The laboratory tests were conducted by Innovative Bioanalysis, a CAP, CLIA, AABB certified safety reference laboratory. The tests were performed in a setting designed to replicate the ionisation conditions of business and commercial aircraft interiors.
Pathogens transfer by latching on to a host, ACA explains. Viruses expel from a person through mucus or saliva and are airborne for as long as possible. They go even farther if they latch onto airborne particulates. NPBI works by leveraging an electronic charge to create a high concentration of positive and negative ions. These ions travel through the air continuously seeking out and attaching to particles, which sets in motion a pattern of particle combination. ACA says that as these particles become larger, they are eliminated from the air.
Additionally, ACA says positive and negative ions have microbicidal effects on all pathogens, rendering the COVID-19 virus non-infectious, while neutralising and removing other viruses, allergens, contaminates and even mould spores. Ions produce a natural reaction on the cell membrane of pathogens so they can’t reproduce and then quickly die.
“HEPA filters that are being used on most commercial aircraft are efficient in removing particulates that are greater in size than 3 microns (3µ), but we know the COVID-19 virus is between .002 – .125µ in size,” said Jonathan Saltman of ACA. “That means that the HEPA filters may not remove the virus itself if the virus is attached to a smaller airborne particulate. Our goal is to partner with airlines to increase the efficiency of the existing HEPA filters being used because our system removes particulates that these filters cannot – in addition to neutralising airborne and surface pathogens.”
The ACA system is approved and available on all aircraft manufacturer platforms, makes and models. The proactive system operates through the aircraft’s existing environmental control system (ECS) and functions automatically whenever the ECS is running, neutralising pathogens in the air and on surfaces.
“Our system prevents the spread of viruses by aerosolisation, which is now being shown as the primary method that COVID-19 spreads,” added Saltman. “This, paired with the results from our second test, is just further proof that the NPBI technology is the next critical step to instil confidence with the public that it’s safe to fly again with ACA on board.”