UVC technology in control trays

Finavia announced that it will begin disinfecting security control trays with UVC light technology that works to kill bacteria and viruses. During the pilot project, equipment based on different technologies is planned to be tested on security control lines.

UVC used in surface cleaning is tested

Ulla Lettijeff, Executive Director of Helsinki Airport (HEL), owned and operated by Finavia, said: “Due to the COVID-19 pandemic, we have already improved the cleaning process of security control trays in the spring, but our aim with the pilot project is to take hygiene standards to a new level and finding the best UVC disinfection method for the airport environment. We are aware that this process will be a grueling one, we have to try different materials outside of the industry’s standards. We have high expectations for the performance of this tested equipment.”

The disinfection technology tested at the airport relies on the UVC light used for cleaning surfaces in the healthcare and food industry, as it effectively destroys bacteria on the surfaces. Although the technology of destroying bacteria with UVC rays has proven its worth against bacteria, it is not yet known how effectively successful it is against viruses.

Technology based on pre-corona period

Lettijeff adds that Finavia has introduced more efficient wash cycles and disinfection practices for security control trays even before the coronavirus crisis actually hit Finland. And he added “This new technology will help us further intensify disinfection and improve cleaning standards. We will now be able to quickly disinfect empty security control trays after each use.”

A much more energy efficient technology

The aim of the program is primarily to make a pilot application in order to test the efficiency of the new technology. The pilot application involved testing a variety of different equipment to find the product best suited for the airport environment.

The technology is provided, among others, by the Finnish company LedFuture Oy, which offers a pioneering LED technology-based disinfection solution for testing by Finavia. According to LedFuture, UVC-LED disinfection technology is energy efficient, environmentally friendly and fast, compared to traditional cleaning methods, and is based on research by the University of Helsinki, the University of Eastern Finland and the Finnish Institute of Health and Welfare. In addition, this technology is expected to provide a safer environment for air ambulance flights.