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Acuity manufactures new UV technology to kill germs

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A Crawfordsville company is manufacturing a new ultraviolet product that disinfects the air while lighting the room.

Acuity Brands Lighting has ramped up production of the unit that uses the light technology, which has long been used to kill germs and, some studies show, is effective against the coronavirus.

Called EvolvAIR UV with Downlight, the product continuously circulates pathogen-contaminated air through a sealed chamber, where the air is treated with a high-intensity ultraviolet light to inactivate bacteria, fungus and viruses. The treated air is then returned to the room.

The technology has become part of the company’s own efforts to limit the spread of COVID-19. The lights were installed in the plant’s two large break rooms and all of the restrooms, areas where there is more exposure to germs.

A cluster of COVID-19 cases, which health officials linked to social exposures outside of the workplace, was identified at the factory in May 2020.

“You feel that extra level of security when you walk inside our break rooms and restrooms,” said Govinda Kadam, an advance manufacturing engineer.

Other ultraviolet fixtures are being developed that will be installed in conference rooms, sales training rooms and assembly areas. The other products are designed to fit over existing light fixtures.

The company has contacted local schools about donating some of the units, said Shawn Ramey, a manager at the plant.

Last year, Acuity donated hand sanitizing stations to public buildings and partnered with the Montgomery County Health Department to promote mask wearing.

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