IIT Ropar develops alternative to alcohol-based disinfectant

Electrolysed water can be used as “a powerful natural tool” to combat COVID-19

February 23, 2021 05:25 pm | Updated 05:25 pm IST - CHANDIGARH

Representational image

Representational image

The IIT Ropar on Tuesday said it has developed a low-cost device to produce electrolysed water that could be used as an alternative to alcohol-based disinfectant.

A team of Dr. Vishwajeet Mehandia, assistant professor, Dr.S. Manigandan of the Department of Chemical Engineering, and Prof. C.R. Suri, head, central research facility, has developed the device. An official statement said the electrolysed water could be used to combat COVID-19.

The acidic electrolysed water has a pH of 5.0-6.5 and high concentration of Free Available Chlorine (FAC). It was reported recently that freely available chlorine can potently inactivate the virus. The electrolysed water also shows strong killing activity against bacteria, fungi and many other types of viruses, said the statement.

Unlike traditional procedure of cleaning water with chlorine treatment, electrolysed water does not harm humans. It also shows strong activity against food-borne pathogens that could be beneficial for food and agricultural industries, it said.

“We have successfully developed the electrolysed water from the tap water in our laboratory with a pH of 5.0-6.5 and a high concentration of FAC. It can be prepared within five minutes and is stable up to one week. We have tested the stability of electrolysed water for up to 48 hours,” said Dr. Mehandia.

Prof. Suri said, “It can be used in healthcare, food safety, water treatment, and general sanitation.”

Dr. Manigandan said the electrolysed water can be used as “a powerful natural tool” in the fight against the COVID-19 virus. It is non-toxic and non-flammable and therefore does not require hazardous or chemical storage or handling precautions. Nor are there any special shipping or export requirements.”

The team is also in touch with a few industrial partners to commercialise the technology, he said.

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