PUP thesis leads to project offering help vs COVID
MANILA, Philippines — Mechanical engineering students from the Polytechnic University of the Philippines (PUP) have designed an ultraviolet disinfection conveyor to contain the new coronavirus and sterilize documents.
This device was the result of a thesis that the students were working on after they saw how fast ultraviolet rays could disinfect objects — for as short as eight seconds.
Soon enough their dissertation led to a P100,000 project that the university approved to develop the machines.
In February 2021, the US Food and Drug Administration (FDA) recommended the use of ultraviolet-C (UVC) lamps in disinfecting surfaces in homes, saying that UVC radiation was effective in reducing the spread of bacteria.
“UVC radiation has [also] been shown to destroy the outer protein coating of the SARS-coronavirus, which is a different virus from the current SARS-CoV-2 virus. The destruction ultimately leads to inactivation of the virus,” the agency said.
“[But it] may also be effective in inactivating the SARS-CoV-2 virus, which is the virus that causes COVID-19,” the US FDA added.
Seven units at first
According to Gino Andres, project head and director of PUP’s Intellectual Property Management Office (Ipmo), the conveyors will be sent to offices that use up large quantities of paper.
“We plan to distribute the machines to crowded areas [in the university], like the accounting office, registrar’s office and those… that are receiving a lot of documents,” he said.
Seven units have been made to start off this project. In a statement, the PUP said more conveyors would be built for the benefit of its entire academic community.
The university also said Ipmo aims to commercialize and mass produce the technology after further developing its specifications.