At the end of the 90s, plasma was used in TV sets and lights. Since then, the disinfecting action of cold plasma has been discovered and it is now used in drinking water treatment, in the packaging of food, and for air purification as a unique technology against viruses, bacteria, or mould.
WINTERSTEIGER collaborates with a partner company who has been working in this field for many years. This is because one of the key requirements of the Drytech drying systems is that it eliminates microorganisms such as viruses and bacteria as well as unpleasant odours on work clothes.
WINTERSTEIGER has adopted and modified a proven, environmentally friendly process for the DRYTECH drying solutions.
Your benefits summed up.
■ Disinfection without the use of toxic or environmentally harmful chemicals
■ Extremely efficient against viruses, bacteria, mould, and spores
■ Neutralizes the odour of volatile organic compounds such as sweat
■ Improves the indoor climate, resulting in fresh, healthy air
■ Unlike ozone it is not oxidizing
■ Beneficial for health
■ Does not damage plastics or synthetic fibres
■ Proven technology, for example in drinking water treatment
What is cold plasma ?
Plasma is the fourth state of matter – alongside solid, liquid, and gas. Cold plasma is a gas made up of ionized molecules, electrons, and dust particles with low energy. Positively and negatively charged ions break harmful substances and gases down into harmless compounds such as oxygen, carbon dioxide, or water vapor. If ions come into contact with harmful pathogens such as viruses, bacteria, or mould, they remove the hydrogen molecules from them. Without hydrogen, the microorganisms lack an energy source and they die.
The DRYTECH drying solutions use cold plasma to efficiently kill bacteria, moulds, viruses, and spores in an environmentally friendly manner.
How it works:
In simple terms, this complex process can be outlined as follows: Air is charged using an electronically controlled electrode at high voltage to create a plasma-air mixture. This mixture acts as an extremely effective disinfectant – in the air as well as on surfaces and textiles. The system is maintenance-free and requires no chemical additives.
Depending on the type of device, the disinfectant eliminates up to 99.9 % (3 log stages) of microorganisms in efficacy groups A and B as specified in the RKI List (as issued by the Robert Koch Institute, Germany).
■ Efficacy group A primarily covers bacteria, fungi, and fungal spores.
■ Efficacy group B covers viruses, including the coronavirus “SARS-CoV-2”. This is documented in the RKI List of tested and certified disinfectants and disinfection methods dated October 31, 2017 (17th Edition).
■ The STEREX disinfection technology also reliably removes unpleasant odours from clothing and work apparel. Disinfection is carried out without the use of toxic or environmentally harmful chemistry. It presents no risk to health.
The disinfectant efficacy of the STEREX technology has been confirmed by the recognized Center of Excellence for Technical Hygiene and Applied Microbiology Dr. Schmelz GmbH (Kompetenzzentrum für technische Hygiene und angewandte Mikrobiologie Dr. Schmelz GmbH) in Malsfeld, Germany by Dr.med. Dipl.-Chem. Dipl-Ing.(FH) Ulrich-Friedrich Schmelz..
FAQ – Answers to frequently asked questions
Does Sterex (or the ions) also attack healthy cells or germs?
No. A high degree of antimicrobial efficacy was noted; at the same time, the hydroxyl radicals have absolutely no detrimental effect on higher organisms and humans. On the contrary, contact with cells of higher organisms causes the radicals to decompose catalytically to water.
Does Sterex (or the ions) also attack cells in textiles or other objects?
No, we are not aware of this phenomenon.
Are there any official requirements or regulations regarding the disinfection?
From a technical viewpoint, there is a clear distinction between disinfection and sterilization. These principles are described using a mathematical notation known as log stages. A log10 stage is a unit of measure denoting a reduction in germs by a power of ten:
The ECO and PRIMUS devices from Wintersteiger are rated at around 99.9 % (2.8 to 3.2 log10 stages).
How exactly does Sterex work?
The air is electrically charged using a special process. Electrically charged particles called ions destroy up to 99.9 % of all viruses (incl. SARS-CoV-2, which causes COVID-19), bacteria and fungi – both in the air and on objects – without using any chemical additives. The process has been tested and certified.
How long is Sterex effective?
The energy source will remain fully functional as long as the product is in use. A time limit cannot be given, although a warranty for 2 years is provided.