TDK Electronics · TDK Europe

Breaking the chain of infection

Cold plasma bio-decontamination

 Intro

TDK CeraPlas®, a cold plasma generator, can be used to develop devices that can inactivate viruses on everyday objects.  Inactivation of the SARS CoV-2 virus requires a logarithmic reduction rate greater than LOG 4*. A technology that has been little used recently to meet these requirements is atmospheric pressure plasma, which generates reactive ionized gases to inactivate the viruses. TDK now offers an Explore Kit for developers, who want to realize their own customized devices based on this bio-decontamination technology.


Decontamination

Explore Kit

Explore Kit App


CeraPlas Explore Kit

The CeraPlas technology enables solutions for virus bio-decontamination. The basic components required for this, such as the plasma generator and control unit, are now available in an Explore Kit for developers.

The implementation of bio-decontamination is relatively simple. A lockable volume for treatment and the plasma generator with its control unit are the basic building blocks to be able to set up a first functioning inactivation unit. To ensure operation with reproducible results, a locking mechanism that prevents premature opening is helpful. The active oxygen is either degraded by itself over an appropriate waiting period or accelerated by the use of catalysts such as activated carbon or manganese dioxide.

The new Explore Kit for testing is characterized by its user-friendly handling. In addition to the simple procedure and easy accessibility in a closed compartment, the duration, scalability and dry process are well suited for bio-decontamination.

For a treatment volume of about 3.5 liters, a single plasma source is well suited for inactivation. A larger volume requires appropriate scaling of the plasma generators.

Through the Explore Kit, TDK can offer a quick and easy development start to interested partners who want to realize their own customized devices.

Order now your Explore Kit

 Explore Kit_pic

How does it work?

Scientific proof of concept

 Proof of concept pic

The strong local electric fields generated when a plasma is ignited ionize the surrounding air and reactive oxygen is formed. In a confined volume, this reactive oxygen has an inactivating effect on viruses.

In a series of experiments conducted in cooperation with the Medical University of Graz, Diagnostic and Research Center for Molecular BioMedicine, the effect was proven. The investigation was concerned with the question of whether viruses on the surface of protective masks made of cotton, for example, or on an FFP3 mask can be inactivated by the method described. The experimental set-up of the investigations was designed as follows:

  1. preparation of the viral load;
  2. application of the viral load to the samples;
  3. determination of the active virus amount by PCR method**;
  4. placement of the samples into the treatment chamber;
  5. deactivation by reactive oxygen;
  6. collection of the samples and determination of the active virus amount by PCR method.

Replicates and positive and negative controls are used to verify the results. The results are shown in the following figure.

** PCR method is a duplication method for nucleic acids, which is based on the principle of the conventional polymerase chain reaction (PCR) and enables the quantification of the DNA obtained.

Comparison of desinfection processes

Process used

Effective on hard surfaces

Effective on soft surfaces

Effective on air ducts and hard to reach areas in the treatment zone

Toxic chemical free process

No plastic, water or consumables 

Non toxic / chemical free surface residue

Temperature or water sensitive material

Oxidative processing

Manual desinfection

Traditional spraying and wiping of disinfectants

Fogging or misting

Atomised chemical treatments

Thermal desinfection

UV desinfection

Active oxygen desinfection

Cleaning, disinfection & sterilization

 Cleaning pic

Since the pandemic crises, a hygiene environment is more important than ever in private life as well as in professional live. However, hygiene is a general term for cleaning surfaces or daily items, which are nutritious soil for germs, viruses and dust. The pureness of hygiene measures is divided in 3 parts – cleaning, disinfection and sterilization. Whereas simple cleaning is not effective enough for a hygiene environment, disinfection eliminates many disease-causing microorganisms. For achieving such pureness of surfaces several products are already on the market, like wet chemicals (based on alcoholic solutions, hydrogen peroxide, chlorine dioxide), UV light or high temperature treatments. Dry disinfection using ozone is a process newly available for service provider in public spaces or private consumers supporting the bio-decontamination.

Bio-decontamination workflow

 Workflow_pic


The process provided by the Explore Kit is simple and easy*. You can bio-decontaminate dry items of your choice in just 6 steps as described below:

  1. You may use the APP on your Android smartphone to follow each single step of the bio-decontamination process. Alternatively, the process is also running without an APP by a simple push on the start button. 
  2. As an example of a defined volume a simple container is delivered with the CeraPlas Explore Kit, but your creativity knows no limit, here. Put all parts in the container for the bio-decontamination process.
  3. By pressing the START button via the app or the push button on the control unit the generation of active oxygen starts. Reactive species of oxygen are directly generated in the volume and provide a bio-decontaminating environment for the virus. 
  4. Generation of active oxygen is running and the bio-decontamination occurs. Virus populations on surfaces are inactivated and further growth is hindered. 
  5. Disinfection step is finished and the reactive species are converted back to oxygen via a catalytic process. 
  6. Release your disinfected items and use it again. 

*Although the usage is self-explaining, please read the operation instruction carefully before first use.


Product resources

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Are you interested in the CeraPlas Explore Kit and becoming a TDK business partner?

Please briefly describe your application and fullfill the contact form. Our cold plasma experts will get in contact with you. 


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