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Anti-microbial Switches: Innovative way to combat viral transmissions

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Anti-microbial Switches: Innovative way to combat viral transmissions

Safety against viruses and microbial germs has taken a central stage as a result of the ongoing pandemic. Innovations in terms of reducing transmission risks are at all timely high. mojo4industry interacts with experts from Panasonic Life Solutions India and Schneider Electric India who have come up with a range of self-disinfecting anti-viral and antimicrobial switches, paving a way to battle virus transmissions.

How many times do you turn to the electric switches at your home or office to turn off and turn on your laptop and other appliances? Well, it might be just a switch for you, however, for microbial germs and viruses, it is a gold mine! Surprised, aren’t you? Well, it is a well-known fact that electric switches are amongst the most touched objects at our homes and workplaces. So, the next time you play with the switches, just remind yourself of the number of bacteria that you have let on your hand! Horrified? Don’t worry, a few companies have already launched their new range of self-disinfecting anti-viral and antimicrobial switches. It is claimed that anti-viral and antimicrobial switches can reduce virus transmission risks. In this regard, we got in touch with the solution providers to ask the most daunting question- Are antimicrobial and anti-viral switches useful? 

rajesh nandwani business unit head wiring devices panasonic life solutions india
Rajesh Nandwani, Business Unit Head – Wiring Devices, Panasonic Life Solutions India

The technology in brief

The bacteria and fungus which are present in the air and the surfaces are breeding grounds for contamination. In this regard, Panasonic Life Solutions India Pvt. Ltd has come up with antimicrobial solutions that kill and prevent the growth of bacteria and fungus. Explaining more about the technology, Rajesh Nandwani, Business Unit Head – Wiring Devices, Panasonic Life Solutions India said, “The switches that we have introduced are excellent in design and are made out of polycarbonate with special additives.” These are silver ion special additives that positively charge silver ions which block the bacterial respiratory system which in turn bursts the bacterial cell membrane. This destroys the bacteria and prevents its replication. This is primarily the technology of Polycarbonates with special additives.

srinivasshanbhogue vice president home and distribution at schneider electric india
Srinivas Shanbhogue, Vice President – Home and Distribution at Schneider Electric India

While Panasonic has designed silver ion-induced switches, Srinivas Shanbhogue, Vice President – Home and Distribution at Schneider Electric India has also been successful in getting the breakthrough. “Ours is a self-disinfecting product that enables any kind of viral or bacterial germs that dwell on the switches to be disinfected immediately. This technology has been very recently launched that has caused a breakthrough. We have launched this product in a flagship range for homes and hospitals and any utility area. The product provides all-around safety,” he explains.

Technical effectiveness
These new anti-microbial switches have anti-bacterial and anti-fungal properties that promote a healthy environment which facilitates the 99 percent reduction in bacterial and fungal development. The Panasonic switches are tested as per the Japanese standard Z2801 which is equivalent to internationally recognized methods to test anti-fungal properties.

In terms of testing standards, Schneider has been a large corporate with a global presence and has come up with solutions that are global in nature across standards and geographies. “We have kept in mind all the standards. we meet the best standards and our products have been validated by various labs- in India and abroad,” adds Shanbhogue.

Will the self-disinfecting technology work for the lifetime of a switch?
The solution providers have thought in the depth of this considering it as an important deliverable. Both have included during the very early stage of raw material processing. They are a part of the raw material processing and are claimed to provide lifetime workability for the switches. The companies are confident that this is one technology that is going to be accepted by people with an open heart.

Product innovation
While explaining product innovation, Nandwani says that due to the humongous amount of risk in terms of transmission of diseases, all the switches that are manufactured in India are of high quality and undergo numerous tests. “The products will be lasting up to five years which will be a solution for extra protection in terms of protection against fire and any other hazards, “adds Nandwani.

Shanbhogue is optimistic about the innovation that has been carried out for the first time in India. “This will benefit a large part of the population in India and this is also another responsibility to contribute to the society through our innovation,” he says.

Acceptance in the Indian market
Health and safety irrespective of location have taken a centre stage and everyone is looking for this kind of technology that can act as a shield to the people. Both the players are leading in their deliverables for switches and are looking forward to taking the solution to a larger market after they get a satisfactory response from the Indian customers. High-end customers such as hotels, medical colleges, and hospitals have already got in touch with these players for their products. However, it will not stop just at these as individual customers will also reach out for such solutions.

In a way, these solutions have revolutionised the electric switches market and will pave way for innovative ways in effectively combating viral and microbial germ transmission.


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