MUMBAI: The research team of the Western Naval Command (WNC) in Mumbai has developed ultra violet (UV) sanitization chambers for its workers. The chambers are kept each at the Naval Dock and at INS Karanja in Uran where the worker’s coveralls, tools, personal gadgets and masks will be kept for sanitization before it is taken inside the work area. The facility is placed at the entry/ exit points where it will help in mitigating COVID-19 transmission.
The defence spokesperson said the UV sanitisation bay has been developed to meet this emerging requirement. The UV bay will be utilised for decontamination of tools, clothes and other miscellaneous items, to control the spread of the coronavirus. “The challenging task required ingenuity to convert a large common room into a UV bay by fabrication of aluminium sheets electrical arrangements for UV-C lighting,” said the official.
The official said as they look at partial and eventually complete lifting of lockdown, queries are already being posed as to what the “new normal” will be, especially for large production organisations like Dockyards and other naval establishments, where a sizeable number of workers will resume work post lifting of lockdown and these numbers are expected to gradually increase. This led to the strong need for a sanitisation facility for worker’s coveralls, tools, personal gadgets and masks.
The facility utilises UV-C light source for Germicidal Irradiation towards sterilising items. Studies by reputed research agencies have proven the effect of UV-C on respiratory pathogens like SARS, Influenza etc. It has been observed that microbial pathogens become significantly less viable when exposed to UV-C of intensity 1 J/cm2 for 1 min or more, indicating effective sterilisation.
The official said a similar facility has also been set up at Naval Station (Karanja), wherein addition to UV-C steriliser, an industrial oven has also been placed, which heats smaller sized belongings to 60°C, a temperature known to kill most microbes.

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