Author: Jolanta Skwaradowska     Published At: 29.11.2021

Another invention of the scientists of the Silesian University of Technology to help in the fight against COVID-19 pandemic 

Scientists from the Silesian University of Technology have constructed an innovative air purifier to help combat the COVID-19 pandemic. The device can be used in hospitals, schools, kindergartens or offices. 

The purifier can be used in large areas with a lot of people and insufficient ventilation. "The innovation of this device is based on in its pulsating action and the fact that it can work perfectly in rooms with a large volume. It is also more efficient and universal, because it is part of the fight not only against COVID-19, but also, for example, against smog" says professor Sebastian Werle.

"The device has two inlet channels through which air can be sucked in e.g. from another room or from outside the building, purified and pumped into another room. This is a very important function, because many school or hospital buildings are quite old and air conditioning cannot be installed" says one of the inventors, Artur Czachor, PhD, president of the WAAM start-up.

The device can clean a classroom-sized room, is more efficient, cheaper than similar purifiers on the market and, importantly, the cost of its operation is low.

"We tried to design this device in such a way that a public institution, which often faces financial problems, would not be forced to frequently service the device or buy expensive filters. We did it in such a way that it would be cheap, economical and efficient" adds Artur Czachor.

The air purifier constructed by the SUT’s scientists is also more efficient. "During the testing of this device, it turned out that the efficiency of air purification was 30 percent better in comparison to devices which are commonly available on the market" says Ewa Brągoszewska, PhD, from the Department of Technologies and Installations for Waste Management of the Silesian University of Technology. 

The first air purifier constructed by the scientists of the Silesian University of Technology will be placed in children's emergency room in Clinical Hospital No.1 in Zabrze. "We have chosen the emergency room, because such a place is an accumulation of cases with different types of viruses. Among them there are three dominating viruses: flu, RSV and coronavirus, which, in recent days, is very common both among children and their carers" says doctor Dariusz Budziński, Director of the Independent Public Clinical Hospital No. 1 named after Prof. Stanisław Szyszko of the Medical University of Silesia in Katowice.

The Clinical Hospital has been cooperating with the Silesian University of Technology for a long time. "When the COVID-19 pandemic has started, the Silesian University of Technology was one of the first universities which offered us help. Thanks to that we have been using decontamination gates created by the scientists of the Silesian University of Technology until today" adds director Dariusz Budziński.

"Recently, the Silesian University of Technology has been active in the fight against COVID-19. There was a decontamination gate, now we have an air purifier. We should also remember about European HealthTech Innovation Centre, which was established in Zabrze as a joint project of the Faculty of Biomedical Engineering of the Silesian University of Technology, the City of Zabrze and Philips. The Silesian University of Technology tries to be very active in the area of health protection" adds prof. Sebastian Werle.

Work on the construction of the air purifier started in March this year. The project team consisted of members of the WAAM start-up and scientists from the Department of Technologies and Installations for Waste Management of the Silesian University of Technology, under the supervision of professor Krzysztof Pikoń.

The air purifier was installed at the Zabrze hospital thanks to the cooperation with the Novis Plus Foundation. The second such device will be a prize in the "School Hero" contest promoting vaccination against COVID-19.

"The competition we are organising together with the Silesian University of Technology is based on the fact that we want to promote vaccinations, without which we are not able to fight COVID-19. In addition to the prize, the winner of the competition will have the opportunity to nominate a school to receive the air purifier" says Katarzyna Słaboń from the Novis Plus Foundation. More information about the contest can be found at https://www.bohater-szkoly.pl/.

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