Something in the air kills flu virus

British company claims portable decontamination device eliminates 99.9999 percent of airborne viruses, bacteria.

Mark Rutherford
The military establishment's ever increasing reliance on technology and whiz-bang gadgetry impacts us as consumers, investors, taxpayers and ultimately as the defended. Our mission here is to bring some of these products and concepts to your attention based on carefully selected criteria such as importance to national security, originality, collateral damage to the treasury and adaptability to yard maintenance-but not necessarily in that order. E-mail him at markr@milapp.com. Disclosure.
Mark Rutherford
2 min read

A British company continues to offer a portable decontamination device that should come as breath of fresh air to a flu-weary public.

In fact the unit duplicates the ability of "outdoor fresh air" to destroy a wide range of airborne viruses and bacteria including the H5N1, influenza, and SARS, all within minutes of contact, according to Tri--Air Developments. "It's almost so good that nobody is going to believe it," admits Martin Wyatt, of the Buildings Research Establishment, a quasi-government agency that has been involved with the development.

The London based company claims it has already produced a prototype compact enough to fit in the ventilation systems of trains and aircraft (10 inches by 5 inches), and expects to follow up with a personal belt, clip-on unit, according to Tri-Air technical director Alan Mole.

The biotechnology device generates a continuous flow of hydroxyl radicals, same as those found in natural abundance in the great outdoors, (especially in forested mountain areas.) These hydroxyl radicals, when combined with a couple of other decontamination technologies--i.e. non-thermal plasma and ultraviolet catalysis-- make quick work of flu and cold viruses, boasting a 99.9999 percent kill rate or "100 percent more effective" than anything else currently on the market, according to the company.

"Our way of life is continually threatened by viruses and bacteria," according to a company press release. "When someone sneezes the particles of mucus ejected are full of viruses: the hydroxyl radicals from the unit condense onto these particles and rapidly destroy the viruses even in close human proximity."

The technology can also be deployed as standalone units or incorporated within large ventilation systems of commercial and public buildings. And, it's safe to use to operate "whilst people are present," according to the company.