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University receives PPE disinfecting prototype from Toyota

September 8, 2020   by Mario Cywinski




University of Waterloo’s (UW) Department of Chemical Engineering and Health Services received a prototype for a PPE disinfecting machine, from Toyota Motor Manufacturing Canada (TMMC).

“Developing new, effective ways to sterilize PPE is one way to control the spread of COVID-19, and we look forward to continuing the development of TMMC’s prototype,” said Dr. Clark Baldwin, Medical Director, University of Waterloo. “It looks like the application of this UV treatment for sterilization purposes is going to be quite safe, no residuals, no chemicals, but that it will be very effective in killing the coronavirus. I would say that we’re looking at it from a health care perspective, but the implications are beyond that.”

The machine uses Ultraviolet C (UVC) light, with a reflective chamber being equipped with several UVC lamps. Contaminated items are loaded into a wheeled rack and rolled inside. Once secured using latches, the machine exposes items to UVC light for approximately five minutes to disinfect them.

“The initial testing will help identify potential opportunities for modifications or improvements,” said Professor Bill Anderson from the Department of Chemical Engineering at the University of Waterloo, who is leading the testing of the prototype. “These might involve changes to the rack materials or layout, to achieve specific purposes or to accommodate certain items.”

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TMMC engineers developed the machine in partnership with Prescientx and JMP Solutions.

“When we suspended operations at our plants in March, our Assembly Engineering Group was tasked with developing a method to improve our ability to disinfect PPE and tools within the plants,” said Fred Huard, Senior Engineering Analyst, TMMC.

(Kitchener Today / MRO)


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