DR Ambedkar IAS Academy

What is UV Disinfection tower developed by DRDO and how it will work?

The Ultraviolet (UV) disinfection tower will disinfectant high infection-prone areas more rapidly and make it chemical-free. The name of the equipment is ‘UV blaster’.

What is UV Blaster?

It is a UV based area sanitiser that is designed and developed by the Laser Science & Technology Centre (LASTEC).

LASTEC is a Delhi based premier laboratory of DRDO and has developed it with the help of M/s New Age Instruments and Materials Private Limited, Gurugram.

Use of UV Blaster

It is used for top tech surfaces like equipment, computers and other gadgets in laboratories and offices that aren’t suitable for disinfection with chemical methods. It will also be effective for those areas where there is a large flow of people including airports, shopping malls, metros, hotels, factories, offices, etc.

What does the equipment consist of?

The equipment has 6 lamps each with 43 watts of UV-C power at 254 nm wavelength for 360-degree illumination. It can also be remotely operated through a laptop/mobile phone by using a wifi link.

According to the Defence Ministry, the disinfection time is about 10 minutes for about a room of 12X12 feet dimension and 30 minutes for 400 square feet area by positioning the equipment at different places within the room. Further, on an accidental opening or human intervention, the sanitiser switches off. It has a safety feature the key to arm operation.

What is the source of UV radiation and its types?

The source of UV radiation is the Sun. It is subdivided into UV-A, UV-B and UV-C. UV-A rays have the longest wavelengths whereas UV-B and UV-C rays have the shortest wavelengths. UV-A and UV-B rays are transmitted through the atmosphere. All UV-C and some UV-B rays are absorbed by the ozone layer. Therefore, most of the UV rays that you may come in contact with are UV-A with a small amount of UV-B.

So we can say that the most harmful radiation that is almost completely absorbed by our atmosphere is UV-C.

Both UV-A and UV-B rays can cause damage to the skin. The short-term overexposure causes sunburn while premature ageing and skin cancer is a side effect of prolonged UV exposure. Exposure to UV-B rays increases the danger of DNA and other cellular damage in living organisms.