Students Awarded at IUVA Americas Conference
The 2020 IUVA Americas Conference awarded the second annual “Jim Bolton Award for Best Student Presentation.” First place went to Mariana Lanzarini-Lopes, Arizona State University, for her presentation of Advancing Disinfection Technologies by UV-C Side Emitting Optical Fibers, co-authored by Paul Westerhoff and Francois Perreault. The presentation represented a novel approach of applying emerging LED technology to water treatment and beyond. Tara Randall from the University of Colorado Boulder and Hamed Torkzadeh from Clemson University tied for second place. Randall’s
presentation showcased her study on biofouling control at the emitters of the drip irrigation facility using UV-LEDs, and Torkzadeh’s research focused on the development of a laboratory protocol to determine the minimum LED UV intensity to prevent opportunistic pathogen growth in showerheads. First place included a $300 cash prize and second place $100, generously sponsored by Brown and Caldwell.
Food Safety Panel Conducted During IUVA/RadTech Joint Conference
The UV for Food Safety panel convened during the IUVA/RadTech joint conference in March. It discussed the topic “Is UV Technology Ready for Food Applications?” The general conclusions derived from the discussions were that UV-C-based approaches can play a significant role as preventative control steps to reduce pathogen dissemination through the food chain and also to enhance shelf life, thereby reducing food waste. To achieve this vision there is a need to see UV as a supplement rather than direct replacement of current interventions. Moreover, particularly in the case of UV-C LEDs, there is a need to be innovative with respect to reactor designs. The challenge and opportunities are primarily in the area of materials handling to ensure solid or liquid foods, in addition to irrigation water, are uniformly dosed with UV properly. Finally, to gain traction within the food industry, it is important to show tangible benefits. This can be in the form of shelf life extension, reduced water usage, etc. In conclusion, given the extensive nature and breadth of the topics covered, the UV for Food and Safety working group has many ripe areas of study to continue discussing. The next step for the group is to drill down on one area for task force focus.
COVID-19 Task Force: YP Media Curation Focus Group Update
Media articles continue to expose global efforts that use UV radiation to aid in the COVID-19 pandemic. The Young Professional Media Curation Focus Group of the IUVA’s COVID-19 Task Force is both synthesizing media information and providing basic understanding of UV radiation and safety to the public. The focus group created informative and easy-to-digest graphics of relevant information for UV safety and a summary of the potential for UV disinfection of PPE, surfaces and air. Some of the main findings from the focus group’s synthesis work include that disinfection of N95 facepiece respirators with germicidal UV radiation has been reported to enable the reuse of facemasks up to two times without adverse effects to filtration efficiency; UV robots have been launched that claim to inactivate 99.99% of bacteria and viruses in a typical hospital room within 10 to 15 minutes; and that UV-C has been installed in HVAC equipment to inactivate viruses present in aerosols. Although these articles can aid in technological advancements and utility, the effective use of germicidal UV radiation requires a high level of expertise. Lack of appropriate understanding can lead to both ineffective disinfection and health risks (i.e., skin cancer). The main considerations for UV disinfection should include treatment time adjustment according to the provided UV intensity, shading effects due to PPE or room geometry that protect bacteria and viruses and proper precautions to avoid UV exposure to skin or eyes.
New Awards Presented at IUVA Americas 2020
At the IUVA Americas 2020 in Orlando, Oliver Lawal, president and CEO of AquiSense and immediate past president of IUVA, presented special awards in partnership with the RadTech awards program. An Emerging Technology Award, for novel, creative and impactful uses of UV disinfection technology was presented to OASIS International for their recently announced QUASAR™ – a UV-C LED system for point-of-dispense disinfection. In addition, IUVA recognized two RadLaunch awards for students, universities and start-ups doing novel work in the field. Sujay Swain, a high school student from Maryland, received an award for his development of a low-cost water purification method by leveraging the synergetic effect of UV and IR radiation. Dana Pousty, from Tel Aviv University, was recognized for an all-in-one solar LED purification bottle for everyday home use. This innovation uses UV LEDs offering adjustable wavelengths according to the need for long lifetimes, constant output and operation at ambient temperatures.
Updates from the IUVA YP Committee
Look out for the IUVA YP’s newest initiative, Wavelength, a podcast project initiated by YP Committee members Dana Pousty and Nathan Moore. The podcast, hosted by YP Michael Hofmann, will focus on interviewing members of the UV community to gain insight into breaking news, the newest tech trends and professional development opportunities in the UV industry. The first episode is available now on the IUVA website and features interviews with IUVA President Dr. Ron Hofmann and IUVA COVID-19 Task Force leader Dr. Ted Mao as they discuss the potential of UV disinfection for reducing the transmission of COVID-19 and the efforts the IUVA is making during this pandemic to ensure accurate information is available to the global community. The episode is available in English and Mandarin.
The committee would like to take this time to highlight the excellent contributions of all the YP members who have taken on extra work to aid the IUVA’s COVID-19 Task Force.
Special thanks to YP Richard Simons who, on top of his roles in the COVID-19 focus groups, was quick to spearhead writing the UV safety and information press release following suggestions that UV could be used as a treatment for COVID-19. The committee is incredibly proud of all the hard work these YPs have put in during these uncertain times.
The YP Committee exists to increase interest and involvement in the IUVA and UV industry among young professionals (YPs), defined as students and professionals less than 35 years old or with less than five years of experience post-graduation in UV-related industry, government or academia. For more information or to get more involved, follow the committee on Twitter and Facebook (@IUVAYP) or at firstname.lastname@example.org for more updates on upcoming events and initiatives.