1998 Progress Report: Indoor Air Biocontaminant Control by Means of Combined Electrically Enhanced Filtration and OAUGDP Plasma SterilizationEPA Contract Number: 68D99025
Title: Indoor Air Biocontaminant Control by Means of Combined Electrically Enhanced Filtration and OAUGDP Plasma Sterilization
Investigators: Helfritch, Dennis J.
Current Investigators: Kelly-Wintenberg, Kimberly
Small Business: Environmental Elements Corporation
Current Small Business: Atmospheric Glow Technologies
EPA Contact: Richards, April
Project Period: September 1, 1999 through September 1, 2001
Project Period Covered by this Report: September 1, 1997 through September 1, 1998
Project Amount: $224,715
RFA: Small Business Innovation Research (SBIR) - Phase II (1999) Recipients Lists
Research Category: Air Quality and Air Toxics , SBIR - Air Pollution , Small Business Innovation Research (SBIR)
Description:The filtration of bacteria and viruses from indoor air is hindered by two characteristics of the organisms extremely small size and the ability to propagate. The typical diameter of bacteria is a few micrometers, but viruses can be 1/100 this diameter. It is well known that the effective filtration of particles less than one micrometer is difficult. It also is known that the organisms that are captured by the filter can propagate on the filter surface, necessitating frequent filter changes.
The use of electric fields and electric discharges can address both of these challenges. The improvement of filter capture efficiency through the application of electrostatic fields is well established. Polarization effects brought about by an electric field produces an attractive force between particles and filter fibers resulting in significantly enhanced filter efficiency, especially for small particles.
The sterilization of surfaces through exposure to low temperature gas discharges has been demonstrated to be very effective. The purpose of this SBIR project is to apply the combination of electrostatic filter enhancement and plasma filter sterilization to a conventional air filter. The resulting device would effectively capture even the smallest organisms and would destroy the organisms thus captured.