How UV-C Works And It's Best Safety Practices
UV-C light is growing in popularity as a form of disinfection - but it isn’t new. It’s been around for a long time. Safety practices were developed to best handle it. It’s very dangerous to biological life and it needs to be handled with care.
In order to handle it safely, it’s a good idea to understand why it’s dangerous in the first place.
What Is UV Light?
UV light is electromagnetic radiation - which is energy. Energy moves in waves. We classify energy based on the size of their waves and their frequency. We take that information and spread it over a spectrum.
The spectrum ranges from radio waves, which have the largest wavelength but the shortest frequency, and gamma waves, which have the smallest wavelength but the largest frequency.
Visible light is located near the center of the spectrum. This is the light that visible to us, humans.
As we move through the visible light spectrum the wavelength gets smaller and the frequency gets larger. Once we move through violet we get into the Ultraviolet or UV light.
UV light ranges from 10nm to 400nm in wavelength and is further categorized into a UV spectrum.
The most common forms of UV light are UV-A, UV-B, and UV-C.
- UV-A ranges from 400nm to 315nm in wavelength.
- UV-B ranges from 315nm to 280nm in wavelength.
- UV-C ranges from 280nm to 100nm in wavelength.
All three forms of UV light are actually emitted from the sun. UV-C cannot make it through the ozone layer of the atmosphere, but UV-A and UV-B certainly can. They are the reason why you have to wear sunblock.
UV-C is the most damaging to organic life and is also known as the germicidal wavelength. This is because organic materials are very good at absorbing the level of energy emission from UV-C. This absorption can lead to damage at the cellular level. It causes a distortion of DNA.
Side Effects Of UV-C Exposure
Improper exposure to UV-C light has a wide range of side effects depending on the length of the exposure.
It can cause painful burns on the skin, can damage the cornea in your eyes if observed directly, and if that wasn’t enough it is also a known carcinogen for human skin.
But these exact reasons for why it’s bad for humans also make it great for disinfecting. It is able to kill germs, viruses, fungi, and bacteria at the DNA and RNA level. UV-C is a phenomenal way of keeping things clean and disinfected.
It’s so effective that it’s even used in biological labs around the world.
Safety Practices For Before And During The Use Of UV-C Use
- Never look directly at UV-C light
As stated above, UV-C is very dangerous to observe directly. It can cause serious damage to your eyes. It can and will damage your corneas.
- Don’t be near any UV-C products while they are active.
Being near UV-C can cause serious burns to your skin. It destroys cells from within by attacking their DNA. It’s no joke.
- Read warning labels before using any UV-C product
Be sure to always read the label of a UV-C product to get all of the warnings associated with it. Some you may not be familiar with so it's always best to double-check.
- Read instruction manuals before use of any UV-C product
Each UV-C product has it’s own design and features. To get a better idea of how to best interact with these features and keep yourself safe it is important to thoroughly read the user manual.
Let others know that a UV-C device is in use
While it’s important to keep yourself safe it’s also just as important to keep others safe. This can be done by informing everyone that a UV-C product is in use. This should be done as clearly and effectively as possible. Don’t be afraid to throw a sign up if need be.
The Apollo UV-C disinfecting lamp
It harnesses Germicidal UV-C light at 60 Watts to have an effective disinfection range of up to 645 ft². This size is large enough to disinfect most rooms in a very quick and effective manner. It's Two-In-One Cleaning, with UV-C light and ozone to disinfect surfaces, deodorize and purify the air
We made Apollo with adjustable activation timers to allow for you to adjust easily conform to your target room size. Timers range from 15-60 minutes and automatically shut off when finished. We also put in automatic shut off 5-meter motion detection sensors to protect pets and unexpected visitors.
Apollo is sized at just under 2 feet at 20 inches it's still very portable. Not to worry, the effectiveness of Apollo comes from not it's size, but from the power of wattage for the lamp. At 60 Watts, pathogens and allergens and mold are killed quickly, easily, and with reliability.
The Apollo is designed with ease of use, power, and safety in mind.