Electrostatics: Breakthrough in Disinfectant Application


Electrostatics has been around and used for decades in many industries. In fact, the automotive, agriculture, inkjet and photocopier industries all use electrostatic technology.

girl-balloonElectrostatics is not hard to understand. Remember when you were a kid and you rubbed a balloon against your head? Rubbing the balloon against hair forms an electrostatic force between the two objects. When you rub a balloon against your hair, the balloon steals electrons from your hair. This leaves your hair positively charged and the balloon negatively charged. Your hair will be attracted to the surface of the balloon because opposite charges attract.

Magnets are another simple illustration. Remember when you first discovered that two magnets snapped together and stuck like glue? When you held the two magnets close, you could feel them either attract (pull toward) or repel (push away). Magic? No, it’s simply magnetism at work.red-magnet

As we’ve seen from the above examples, opposite charges attract (pull towards each other) and like charges repel (push away from each other). Two positively charged things ( + and + ) will repel each other. Two negatively charged things ( and  ) will repel each other. On the other hand, one positively charged thing ( + ) and one negatively charged thing (  ) will attract each other. Opposites attract. That’s the basis of electrostatic spraying.

electrostatic-autoGoing back to the auto industry, paint is sprayed onto millions of cars each year. The process is made more efficient by using electrostatic charge. The spray goes past a positively charged needle as it leaves the spray gun and the droplets pick up a positive charge. The droplets are extremely small (usually between 40 and 60 microns in diameter), so small that they are tinier than the diameter of a human hair (70 microns).

Electrostatics Improve Efficiency in Two Ways:

  1. The droplets spread out more as they leave the electrostatic nozzle. This happens because they all get the same positive charge and so they all repel each other. This is more effective than coming straight out of the sprayer because the liquid covers a wider area more evenly (think about how smooth and consistent car paint looks).
  2. The droplets are highly attracted to a negative or neutral surface, and so less liquid is wasted (landing on floors or walls).

dispersionE-Mist Electrostatic Infection Control Systems
We’ve taken this proven technology and developed a patented application system. As mentioned, most surface areas are neutral (uncharged) or negative. Our systems are used to apply your provided EPA-registered water soluble disinfectants. The E-Mist Electrostatic Systems place a positive ( + ) charge on the droplets as they leave the spray nozzle. The dispersed droplets spread out more evenly and seek out a negative (  ) or neutrally charged surface. The end result is that your disinfectant is more targeted, provides more uniform coverage with less waste, and like the magnets, attracted to the surface with remarkable force. In fact, chemical droplets will adhere more consistently and more comprehensively to vertical, horizontal and even around most surface areas.

As proven in the automotive and agriculture industries, this electrostatic application process takes less time to achieve the desired effect, while substantially reducing chemical costs.

Research studies show that environmental cleaning and disinfection play important roles in the prevention and control of healthcare-associated infections. Though prevalent and widely used since the 1960’s in other industries, electrostatic technology is now being adopted in the application of disinfectants.