An ozone-based decontamination device, Chakr DeCoV, to enable safe reuse of N95 masks has been developed by an incubated startup of Indian Institute Of Technology or IIT Delhi. The device has been developed keeping in view the high reliability of healthcare workers on these masks in fight against the coronavirus.
Chakr DeCoV was launched by Minister of State Ashwini Kumar Choubey on Friday.
The unsafe re-use of N95 masks may put lives at risk and an increase in the biomedical waste by disposing of these masks could cause additional infection and environmental risk.
The unique technology by the IIT Delhi startup can decontaminate N95 masks in only 90 minutes for safe reuse.
"Chakr DeCoV is built with an innovative ozone-based decontamination mechanism, which ensure effective decontamination with high reliability and safety, as needed in a hospital environment. We also believe that our product will help solve the rising concerns over biomedical waste generation while treating novel coronavirus disease," said Kushagra Srivastava, CEO, Chakr Innovation.
The device, designed in the shape of a cabinet, utilises the high penetrability of Ozone gas for cleaning the pores of the N95 mask, ensuring complete decontamination of its intricate layers.
Ozone is a strong oxidizing agent that destroys viruses by diffusing through the protein coat, resulting in damage to the viral RNA.
To ensure utmost safety against any human exposure to ozone, the system is designed with biosafety door and a catalytic reduction system.
The technology has been tested at IIT Delhi's Centre for Biomedical Engineering and has undergone rigorous in-house testing for safety and reliability.
The startup is running successful pilots for this product in Pune and are now ready to scale this well-tested and reliable product.