IIT Guwahati’s initiative, ‘Scientists Beyond Borders’, develops low-cost UVC light-based disinfectant box

Guwahati: Indian Institute of Technology Guwahati research team has developed a low-cost UVC light-based disinfectant box for disinfecting disposable medical accessories like gloves, masks etc. along with disinfecting the household wastes before going to the community bins. The innovation is uniquely designed to sanitise floors and prevent direct exposure to individuals.

IIT Guwahati faculty members, Dr. Harsh Chaturvedi, Assistant Professor, Centre for Energy, and Dr. Charu Monga, Assistant Professor, Department of Design, along with Shashaanka Ashili, Director, SmartDriv Inc (US), has formed the group, ‘Scientists Beyond Borders’. The group comprises of entrepreneurs, engineers, scientists, researchers, and faculties from across the globe – India, Australia, UK, France, and the USA, is working on addressing the ongoing pandemic. It is collecting, analysing, disseminating data and awareness, based on this pandemic, globally.

Under this group, IIT Guwahati is leading the following projects:

1. Development of low-cost UVC light-based disinfectant box

2. Development of masks and sanitisers

3. Curation and generation of scientific content

4. Translation of scientific content in different languages (Assamese, Manipuri, Hindi, Gujarati, Marathi, Bengali, etc)

Low-cost UVC light-based disinfectant box

IIT Guwahati team has also developed a low-cost UVC light-based smart portable appliances to disinfect disposable medical accessories along with sanitisation of rooms, and floors. The UVC light-based box is uniquely designed to be used at hospitals and public spaces for disinfecting used masks, gloves etc.

The innovation is developed by Dr. Harsh Chaturvedi and Ms. Priyadevi, a PhD student. UVC box has been donated to the government office in Manipur. The team is working with Propelis group, Pune, for commercial manufacturing of UVC based disinfectant system.

Speaking about the developments, Dr. Harsh Chaturvedi said, “Along with the necessary precautions to avoid direct exposure, UV based systems offer fast and convenient low-cost disinfecting solution for efficient sanitisation of public spaces, hospitals and household goods and disposable wastes.

The cost of the innovation is approximately Rs. 2,000.

Speaking about the commercialisation of the technology, Mr. Ashutosh Muglikar, Director of Propelis, said, “We are very satisfied with the range of UV based sanitisation products developed by IIT Guwahati and are working on commercialising the technology. Since all the products are designed and made in India using available technology and components, there are very few hindrances in the commercialisation of these much-needed products.”

Development of masks

Dr. Charu Monga, Assistant Professor, Department of Design, IIT Guwahati, has designed the low-cost reusable mask which can be used multiple times with changeable filters. Dr. Charu Monga has designed this along with the scientific team of Dr. Harsh Chaturvedi and sample manufacturing by Global Plastics, Delhi.

Speaking about her work, she said, “We are in the process to produce low-cost, mask with a swappable filter which will be beneficial for ground-level people and staff. It can be used just by replacing the filter multiple times.”

The cost of the mask is approximately Rs. 40.

Sanitisers were also developed by IIT Guwahati students and alumni from Manipur.

Furthermore, relevant information, news/research articles and scientific data from authorised sources are translated and represented in graphical illustration with the help of experts of ‘Scientists Beyond Borders’ in simpler sentences for the common people to understand and communicated through different social networks – Twitter, Instagram, and Facebook. Circulated information is also translated into different languages of India – Assamese, Manipuri, Hindi, Gujarati, Marathi, Bengali, etc.