Testing Lightair IonFlow 50 air purifier and technology
Our unique IonFlow technology is new and revolutionary and most of the existing testing standards are not relevant which means that there is a risk of misinterpretation, which we will try to avoid by supplying relevant test results.
Below we present third party tests on several aspects the efficiency of air purification, primarily on reduction of the concentration of particles, dead or alive, including virus, bacteria and mold as well as laboratory tests on formaldehyde and nicotine and more. We will also explain why certain tests are carried out as they are and why they are relevant.
In order to get a good understanding of the matter we recommend that you read the entire text!
Test methods in general.
Most testing procedures and standards use particles which are artificially generated making it possible to repeat the procedure properly. Such particles are often generated by different chemicals turned into aerosols. The disadvantage with chemicals is that such particles are not very realistic but could actually be quite different from the real normal particles in indoor air and some aspects of such particles are not sufficiently documented, like density etc. but they can be consistently repeated which makes testing easier. Some such particles according to certain standards are called pollen, dust and smoke but that is not what they actually are. Particles generated by burning cigarettes (tobacco smoke) has frequently been used in the past but is no longer as relevant for obvious reasons.
Other means of particle generation are considerably more realistic, such as burning candles, as they generate carbon based (soot) particles from combustion of fossil fuels, which are in general the most common type of particles in the air (from cars, trucks, working machines, ships, air planes, power plants, heat plants, heating and different industrial installations etc.). But the main objective is to generate a specifically known size distribution of particles. The substance of these particles is less important. It is all about size.
All testing procedures are made for testing the efficiency of reducing the concentration of particles of different sizes in the air, meaning all particles of any kind including living particles like viruses, bacteria, allergens, fungi, mould etc.
Health aspects. It is all about small particles.
Testing standards in general are not concentrated where they should be, namely on the fine, ultrafine and nano particles which cause almost all the health problems according to scientific evidence over the last years. Not even the allergy organisations seem to be fully aware of this yet. They still consider pollen to be a major cause which is both true and false. Air cleaning of pollen is like trying to suck in basket balls into a vacuum cleaner. Pollen are huge particles but they contain allergens which come lose when pollen break apart and these are ultrafine particles being mostly proteins/albumins.
And the health problem caused by mould is not about mould spores which are rather big. It has been proven over the last 4-5 years that different kinds of mould continuously generate volumes of ultrafine particles containing mycotoxins which are among the worst poisons generated in nature which is the true cause behind mould sickness.
Small particles (below 2.5 micron, even more below 1 micron and mostly below 0,1 micron) are inhaled more or less deeply into our lungs. They enter into our blood stream bringing diverse organic substances attached. This is now considered to be a major cause of heart and vascular problems today. There is as you know a number of different lung diseases which are caused by the same size particles. In allergic and asthmatic cases the allergens are proven to become many times more aggressive in combination with such small particles of carbonic substances, mostly from combustion of fossil fuels which are always around everywhere in today’s environment.
By testing indoor air pollution or air purification performance it used to be considered significant to count particles of different sizes which obviously remains the most important aspect but also to be able to calculate accumulated mass of particles in the air.
Since some time however the entire focus is on the number of particles and even more on the accumulated surface of particles in the air which increases dramatically with diminishing particle sizes. As normally almost 90% of all particles in indoor air are below 0.1 micron having almost no mass, one can start understanding the enormous impact of this change in scientific approach. And accumulated mass is consequently irrelevant.
Consequently the smallest particles which are everywhere in enormous numbers are proven to cause most of the different health problems and even more so in combination with the most common type of such small particles, i.e. particles from fossil combustion. Reduced particle concentration in the air has a proven positive effect on several aspects of our health.
Relevant test standards.
Some of the above facts have not yet filtered through to allergy organizations or different test institutions and test standards have not been modified accordingly. As our unique IonFlow technology is also new and revolutionary most of the existing testing standards are not relevant which means that there is a risk of misinterpretation, which we will try to avoid by supplying results and by being involved in such testing. Certain aspects of existing standards are actually also open to manipulation of results e.g. CADR. And unfortunately the business is full of false “truths” and “scientific” reports.
Existing SP tests from 2001 were already at the time made with some of the above considerations in mind and are therefore concentrated on small particles (tobacco smoke).
The NIAQ test was made for potential investors in our company. And they wanted this type of real life test to verify our claims by comparing with references in the NIAQ data base of real life situation tests. NIAQ considers such practical testing very important as all parameters such as temperature, humidity, ventilation, environment, quality of the air, substances and size distribution of particles are all real life parameters and conditions.
Benchmark test with market leading brands. Reduction of particle concentration at a maximum acceptable noise level.
We decided to carry out testing at SP Swedish National Testing and Research Institute again as our LightAir IonFlow technology has been considerably improved over time. It started in the middle of August 2008 and includes benchmark testing of major competitive products representing different technologies.
These tests are concentrated on the small particles which are hazardous to our health (fine, ultrafine and nano particles). Burning candles are being used to generate soot particles from combustion of fossil fuels as it is the dominant substance of particles in the air and the size distribution is realistic.
As the quality of indoor air is very volatile, changing rapidly, all air purifiers should by definition stay in operation around the clock in order to continuously reduce the concentration of small particles in the air. At home the best place to have an air purifier is in the bedroom where we spend almost a third of our lives. So the noise level is a very important aspect. Several countries in Europe have set a limit of 30dBA in bedrooms of new construction and EPA in the US considers 45dBA indoors to be a limit for disturbance and annoyance. So we decided to set a maximum noise level of approx. 45dBA. Consequently all units were noise tested before testing of particle reduction in order to determine the maximum acceptable fan speed.
Testing of particle reduction, especially the small particles hazardous to our health, requires very sophisticated and expensive instruments able to register particle sizes down to 0.007 micron in several separate size intervals which were used by SP.
These third party test results form the background for how we actually formulate our claims as it is all a matter of very small particles including living microbes as well as other organic substances. Such a base of test results should come from the top institution in the company home country, in our case from SP which is owned by the Swedish state.
Other third party tests.
Institutions in different parts of the world have tested the capacity to generate ions as well as the efficiency to reduce the concentration of particles in the air like in Japan, Holland, Taiwan, Sweden, etc.
Please see enclosed ozone test report from VTT in Finland which is a highly regarded institution for testing, certification and R&D internationally and also see the previous ozone test by SP. Our products are also ozone tested and certified by CARB in the US.
Since at least twelve years our ionizing technology is being used at the Karolinska Institute for air quality analysis by collecting indoor air particles on small collectors which are then introduced into a sweep electron microscope whereby it is possible to see and determine which viruses, bacteria and other microbes have been in the air. The famous photographer Lennart Nilsson has used this method to take photos of a variety of such microbes.
From such practical experience we have very good reasons to believe that our IonFlow technology effectively collects microbes such as viruses, bacteria, allergens, mould, fungi as well as other organic substances in the air.
Consequences: Medical research.
World class medical research has been carried out since 2007 by a research team at the Karolinska Institute in Stockholm, Sweden. The complete results are to be published in the near future in one of the most highly regarded medical journals in the world. However an abstract has recently been published (see below).
Results: Lightair prevents spread of influenza virus.
A novel ionizing device which actively collects particles from the air by electrostatic attraction, driven by the unique IonFlow technology like the Lightair IonFlow air purifier, is proven for the first time to effectively prevent the spread and infection of airborne transmitted influenza virus. The study proves that the unique IonFlow ionizing technology can be used to capture and eliminate a wide range of epidemiologically important viruses and other pathogens from the air.
See page 17 in the abstract below.
Biolab mould tests have indicated the capacity of the IonFlow technology to effectively reduce the concentration of the small mould particles in the air. Laboratory tests have also indicated that the IonFlow technology effectively reduces the concentration of bacteria, formaldehyde and nicotine in the air.
Lightair technology & product focus.
Based upon the above up-to-date situation our technologies have a definite focus on small particles. Please study test methods, test reports, scientific evidence and institutional information to better understand the performance of the Lightair IonFlow technology.
Lightair testing philosophy.
Third party test results shall have a sufficient level of quality and objectivity to satisfy people in charge of hygiene in hospitals and clinics or be relevant to the scientific community in general. Consequently all test reports must be openly published including the corresponding test methods like any regular scientific paper, in order to be considered valid and reliable. And we will do our utmost to stick to this concept.
Mold report proves Lightair air purifier removes 88% of all mold spores in only 3 hours...