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Article on IKEUCHI’s Dry Fog technology and its anti-virus measures

May 26, 2020

Updated on May 26, 2020
An article on our proprietary Dry Fog technology and anti-virus measures was published in The Environmental News.

Preventing Virus Spread with Non-wetting Dry Fog:
IKEUCHI Announces Proprietary Technology, Takes Aggressive Virus Countermeasures

The Environmental News
April 22, 2020

On April 16, spray nozzle equipment manufacturer H. IKEUCHI & CO., LTD., headed by President and COO Shiro Nakai, held a press release at their headquarters in Osaka City to announce anti-virus measures that make use of Dry Fog, a type of fog achieved through proprietary atomization technology.

Dry-Fog HIGHNOW® demonstration

At the event, Founder and Honorary Chairman Hiroshi Ikeuchi personally talked about the company's viral infection prevention technology: "I was shocked when I read the news about the American nuclear-powered aircraft carrier with more than 400 crew infected by COVID-19 [coronavirus disease 2019]. I felt strongly that it was time for us to put our company's technologies to use." Proposing the combined usage of Dry Fog and electrolyzed hypochlorous acid water (EHA), Chairman Ikeuchi drove his point home, stating, "Current measures such as wearing masks, washing our hands and so forth are merely defensive in nature. IKEUCHI is proposing offensive measures against the virus itself in addition to current defensive measures."

Dry Fog, generated using IKEUCHI-patented nozzles, is characterized by its extremely small spray droplets (measuring 7.5 μm in diameter) which are uniform in size. Dry Fog is similar natural fine fogs encountered as weather phenomena, and it is unique in that it is not wet to the touch, and does not wet surfaces and objects it contacts. This enables its use in semiconductor fabrication plants and similar production facilities where strict humidification restrictions, dust and particles countermeasures, and other such controls are standard practice.

EHA provides excellent disinfection performance against influenza and other viruses: the substance's performance is equivalent to disinfectant-use alcohol (which is 70% effective) or a 0.1% sodium hypochlorite (bleach) solution. Its sodium triggers electrolysis, and this reaction ultimately results in the separating out of salt and water, making it a very safe process.

COVID-19 and other such viruses are about 0.1 micrometers in size, and they often appear in clusters (rather than single viruses) measuring about 5 to 10 micrometers across, making each virus grouping about the same size as a Dry Fog droplet. It is believed that, when the face is unprotected by a mask, such viruses are propelled through the air in droplet groups of about 40,000 when sneezing, about 3,000 when coughing, and about 600 during 1 minute of normal conversation. IKEUCHI's Dry Fog technology can generate about 2,500,000,000 fog droplets per second, which means that roughly 60,000 times the number of virus-sized Dry Fog droplets, containing hypochlorous acid with high anti-viral efficacy, are sent out to envelop and disinfect the airborne viruses.

Furthermore, Dry Fog is effective against viruses that have adhered to surfaces, which create the risk of both direct and indirect infection. Standard virus countermeasures such as wiping down tables, skin and other surfaces using a cloth soaked in ethanol disinfectant, have disadvantages such as the amount of time and labor required, problems with missed spots during wiping, and incompatibility with objects such as cloth material and electronic devices. Dry Fog, on the other hand, saturates entire spaces (at 100% humidity levels) to disinfect the area in a few sweeps. It acts as a thoroughgoing, wall-to-wall measure against surface-adhering viruses that saves on labor and time, and thanks to its full-space disinfecting approach Dry Fog technology can be used as a preventive measure against contact-type infection among medical staff via touching of tablet devices and similar equipment, to eliminate infection routes in break rooms, and to otherwise help prevent virus spread within hospitals and other medical facilities.

IKEUCHI's primary Dry Fog spraying equipment options for these applications include the Dry-Fog HIGHNOW® backpack-style spraying device, which enables quick, localized virus disinfection, and the portable-type AKIMist®"E" T Set spraying unit which requires no piping installation.


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