worst indoor air quality

Safe to Go Back? Fixing Shopping Malls’ Indoor Air Quality Problem

By NoviSphere™ Staff

COVID-19 has made 2020 a year that most will not be sorry to see end. While fast-tracked vaccines are currently being rolled out, offering hope for some return to normalcy, scientists agree that this will not be the last global pandemic. Clean, pure air must be a top priority if we are to prevent the spread of future viruses and other airborne illnesses.

This raises an issue that many of us likely hadn’t thought about too much in the “old days”: the overall air quality of high-traffic public areas such as malls, restaurants, theaters and sports arenas, to name a few. It turns out, for most of these settings, their air quality is problematic. This post is the first in a series that will examine the challenges associated with some of these venues and how NoviSphere addresses them.

Poor indoor air quality is changing consumers’ shopping preferences

Due to the pandemic, this holiday season looks very different for everyone. Many retailers and providers of shipping services predict it will be the largest online shopping holiday season in history, with fewer consumers going out physically to shop than ever before. Small wonder, as it turns out that malls top the list of places with the worst indoor air quality, according to the nonprofit site Environmental Pollution Centers.

Many malls house businesses that can generate high levels of harmful particulates, such as dry cleaners, food courts, salons and paint stores, and the buildings’ ventilation systems typically pull in dust, smoke and pollen from outside air. Further compounding this, we now realize the additional hazards posed by germs – i.e., potential pathogens – expelled into the air by shoppers and store employees in highly crowded conditions. Doesn’t sound like the fun day of shopping you might have in mind?

A new approach to indoor air quality is here

What will it take to convince consumers to step through the mall doors again? How can they be convinced that retail environments are no longer at the top of the worst indoor air quality list? For many, knowing they’re breathing a continuous supply of clean, fresh air will be the tipping point. NoviSphere can make this happen by putting in place rarified-air environments that keep you safe and decrease the spread of airborne illnesses. The NoviSphere™ PE 254 system continuously circulates air through the unit, which contains proprietary baffling technology to entrap pathogens and an array of germicidal 254-nm ultraviolet (UV-C) lights to kill them. This “kill zone” is fully sealed within the system, so it’s completely safe ­– and effective – for use in heavily trafficked locations like malls. The NoviSphere PE 254 runs 24/7 to ensure a safe, pathogen-free shopping environment through COVID-19 and beyond.

We look forward to working with retailers to integrate the NoviSphere PE 254 – as well as future NoviSphere technology offerings – into their venues. Our goal is to help the world get “back to normal” so that people can be out and about, enjoying the holiday shopping season as soon as possible, knowing that they’re protected from airborne pathogens. And the next pandemic? We look forward to helping stop it in its tracks.

Startup NoviSphere launches ultraviolet germ zapper for COVID aerosols

Fierce Healthcare | November 10, 2020

NoviSphere, a startup based in Illinois, introduced a short-wavelength ultraviolet pathogen-eradication system on Tuesday that could prove helpful in fighting airborne COVID-19 in retail and work environments. The company’s NoviSphere PE 254 product kills germs as they pass through a tunnel-like device that could be mounted inside of ventilation ducts or installed high on the walls of rooms in various settings, from doctor’s offices to gymnasium or airport lounges.

Read the full article here.

air purification



NoviSphere™ PE 254 uses germicidal UV-C light to kill 99.99% of airborne viruses, bacteria and other contaminants, creating 24/7 ultraclean environments

ELK GROVE VILLAGE, Ill. – November 10, 2020 – NoviSphere™, a developer of comprehensive rarified-environment solutions officially launched today. Using scientifically proven short-wavelength ultraviolet (UV-C) pathogen-eradication systems and additional cleanroom technologies, NoviSphere delivers ultraclean, protected environments that promote health and safety, allowing people to get back to business, back to work and back to life.

The company’s initial commercial product is NoviSphere™ PE 254, a cost-effective, high-performance UV pathogen-eradication system that delivers the highest possible degree of cleanliness to any environment. Its patent-pending design uses germicidal (254nm) UV-C lamps, fully contained and sealed inside the unit, and proprietary baffling technology to kill up to 99.99% of airborne viruses, bacteria and mold spores. The system continuously removes all pathogens safely and reliably using a variable speed control, providing up to four complete air changes per hour in an average room. The compact system can be used in virtually any large public setting, including, but not limited to, hospitals, schools, warehouses, manufacturing plants, hospitality, mass transit centers, sports facilities, and industrial and commercial settings.

NoviSphere PE 254’s effectiveness has been scientifically validated through extensive independent testing conducted at the University of Minnesota. The results confirmed it eradicated 99.99% of an aerosol coronavirus strain – specifically, HuCov229E, a single-stranded RNA virus similar to COVID-19 that causes respiratory illnesses in humans. Testing on the COVID-19 virus will occur when cultures are available in the scientific community. Additionally, further testing is planned in 2021 to verify 99.9999999% eradication (1 part per billion, or ppb).

Long used to disinfect air and environments, UV-C light works to kill or inactivate microorganisms by destroying nucleic acids and disrupting their DNA. According to Chris Hogan, PhD, Department of Mechanical Engineering, University of Minnesota, “Intense UV-C light has a proven track record of virus inactivation in aerosols. Published papers in Aerosol Science & Technology show it is particularly effective against single-stranded RNA viruses. Coronaviruses – and more specifically, SARS-CoV-2 – are single-stranded RNA viruses and would be highly susceptible to UV-C activation. Sealed, ducted UV-C sources with flow rates above 10 CFM are an effective approach.”

The NoviSphere leadership team, helmed by CEO Paul Lockhart, has a combined 100 years of experience bringing the most advanced solutions to consumers through space technologies, laboratory cleanrooms, biological eradication, consumer product design, retail, and now, eradication of viral contaminants. This highly experienced roster of experts is working together to drive NoviSphere’s growth and product development.

“At NoviSphere, our mission is to deliver confidence and safety to customers in their communities, workplaces and businesses,” said Lockhart. “The rarified environments we enable through our technologies are pathogen and particulate free – essentially, a magnitude better than today’s stringent ultraclean standards. NoviSphere PE 254, designed to effectively monitor and maintain pathogen-free living and working air environments 24 hours each day, delivers you the peace of mind necessary to go about your life and work, knowing you, your family or your employees are breathing virus- and bacteria-free pristine air. As a former astronaut entrusted with some of our nation’s most critical assets, I can think of no endeavor more important than what we are embarking on at NoviSphere.”

Pricing and Availability
NoviSphere™ PE 254 pathogen-eradication systems can be purchased now, with installation and volume deliveries beginning in early 2021. The units will be available through a variety of commercial options, with pricing varying by application and total area of the space where the unit(s) will be installed. Contact sales@novisphere.com for more information or a quote.

NoviSphere stands for “new environments.” We deliver viral, pathogen and bacteria-free environments for a variety of applications and industries through demonstrated barrier protection and assured environmental quality. Our integrated components and pathogen-eradication systems are based on validated scientific methods that eliminate biohazardous material and other airborne contaminants from enclosed settings of any size, while our rarified, “move-in-ready” environments are designed to eliminate risk and promote occupant health and safety. To learn more, visit www.novisphere.com.

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Media Contacts:

Lisa Gillette-Martin
(408) 205-4732

Cindy Egnarski
(920) 619-5152