Today, a room is only as clean as the air within it. Many businesses have upgraded their air-filtration systems to remove the virus that causes COVID-19. But what can be done to protect mobile or temporary spaces amid the pandemic.
Two NYSTAR-backed centers at the University at Buffalo have been working with You First Services, a Western New York company that is helping to control the spread of the novel coronavirus through new, next-level technology.
The solution, SteriSpace, is an engineered air sterilization system that breaks up and destroys airborne pathogens such as COVID-19. It can be integrated into existing air handling systems or, importantly, used as a standalone unit for public transportation, emergency-treatment tents, or any other enclosed space where installing a commercial HVAC system would be impractical.
SteriSpace has been independently tested to show that it destroys more than 99.99 percent of airborne biological contaminants. It provides continuously sterilized air through a process of compressive heating and pressure.
You First Services licensed technology from the University at Buffalo to develop SteriSpace. It is now leveraging UB’s Center of Excellence in Bioinformatics and Life Sciences (CBLS), as well as funding from the Center for Advanced Technology in Big Data and Health Sciences (UB CAT), to further study airflow in indoor spaces through simulation and modeling.
UB researcher Dr. Francine Battaglia collaborates with You First Services on research and development through its partnership with UB CAT, a cost-sharing grant program designed to drive the growth of life and health science businesses in New York State.
The research will help You First Services determine the optimal placement of ventilation for SteriSpace in an indoor area: the high-tech simulations provide air velocities and temperatures throughout a room, which can be visualized to show the direction of airflow; then modeling shows the droplets or particles that move in the air. This work provides the information needed to ensure effectiveness of the ventilation in concert with the SteriSpace technology.
“We highly value our long-standing partnership and collaborative links with UB. Through our collaboration with academic institutions, we have gained new perspectives on the latest technologies and developed insight to help combat existing, new and reemerging diseases faster. The incredible quality of the research programs here at UB has helped make Western New York a leading destination for life sciences and biotechnology research,” You First Services CEO Satish Sharma said. “We will continue to partner with UB to make a significant positive impact on the overall economy of the state and region.”
UB CAT and CBLS are both innovation assets within the NYSTAR network.
For years, New York State has been investing in and building out its innovation infrastructure through NYSTAR, Empire State Development’s Division of Science, Technology and Innovation. NYSTAR oversees a robust, statewide network that provides innovators, entrepreneurs and business leaders with access to the support they need to solve challenges and keep growing, even during periods of downturn. There are over 70 NYSTAR-backed centers across the state that are actively working to generate technology-driven economic growth.