FRESNO, Calif. (KSEE) – It’s a new technology that is being installed in school ventilation systems around the world to help fight the coronavirus. The pinpoint bipolar ionization is specially researched and tested in the state of Fresno.
Local ventilation engineers believe the technology could prove useful in pollution from forest fire smoke and in reducing cooling costs in extreme heat.
Mechanical engineer Jon Schlundt works for Teter Architects and Engineers in Fresno. He designs air and climate installations for facilities like schools, including the new pinpoint bipolar ionization technology: “The technology is no bigger than this little coaster … It is mounted in your equipment. It has two cables that are already tapped from your power supply in this device. “
Ionization technology has helped sterilize the air in industrial environments for decades. It is not safe for general use because of the dangerous amounts of ozone generated. A recent development called “pinpoint” or “needlepoint” bipolar ionization technology has eliminated this problem through precise control. The technology is in great demand right now as it has also been shown to be effective against the coronavirus.
Schlundt says: “One of the solutions to the pandemic was open windows, open doors and fresh air so that the air circulation remains high. It’s hard when it’s smoky and very dangerous outside to let all that smoke into your home or classroom or office. How we fight that is a big part. “
Schlundt now heads a local industry group and is working with Fresno State to better research the technology for particular benefits in the valley. “We’re really focusing on the Central Valley. Smoke, pollen … Then why can’t we use that to increase energy efficiency and obtain filters with a lower rating for better performance? “
Coronavirus was the main topic for most of the tests. Research on other pollutants such as forest fire smoke has not caught up. There are also no studies on how the technology can be further integrated into heating and cooling systems to optimize efficiency. Now that science answers the important questions about the coronavirus, Schlundt believes it is a good time to look at how bipolar ionization can benefit the valley’s residents – especially with so many schools and offices doing it now.
You may know ionization better than you know.
A wool sock in a tumble dryer often adheres to other fabrics due to static electricity. In ionization technology, electricity is used to charge oxygen atoms and attract them into particles, causing them to clump together. This makes it easier to remove very small particles from the air.
The test equipment will be shipped to the state of Fresno next week. Schlundt says, “I think many of us are excited to see what the results will show and we expect these results to be available between June and July.”
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