Blue light sanitizer - what it is and how it works

Blue light sanitizer - what it is and how it works

Blue light sanitizer is a device that produces antimicrobial blue light (aBL) to eliminate microbes, such as bacteria, yeast, mold and certain viruses. Blue light sanitizers kill microbes but are safe for people and materials. Blue light sanitizers must not be confused with dangerous ultraviolet (UVC) radiation devices.

Blue light means non-ultraviolet wavelengths in the visible spectrum, in 400-470 nm range. The most commonly known wavelength for disinfection is 405 nm (violet/blue), but it is not the only one with antimicrobial properties.

LED Tailor designs and manufactures the world's most effective blue light sanitizers (also known as disinfection devices). The touch-free, UV-free and chemical-free disinfection devices utilize LED Tailor's patented Multi-Wavelength, High-Intensity blue light technology.

How MWHI blue light works - watch the short video:

Are all blue light sanitizers the same?

No. We can classify blue light sanitizers into three groups based on their features and capabilities.

  • Regular white light LED luminaires with a little bit of 405 nm violet light mixed in.
  • Luminaires emitting pure 405 nm violet light.
  • Spectral Blue MWHI blue light disinfection devices.

The first group of devices are not actual disinfection devices. They do output some 405 nm light, but majority of the energy goes into producing white light, containing all visible wavelengths. The main purpose of these devices is to provide regular office lighting. While they can show some antimicrobial activity in laboratory tests, in real-life tests in healthcare and school settings, these devices have been shown to either have no effect at all, or worse, actually to boost the growth of microbes.

The second group of devices, using 405 nm LEDs only, can have an antimicrobial effect as long as the output power is high enough, so that you get a high blue light intensity on the target surfaces. For example, one LED light bulb with 9 W power can have an effect at very short ranges, but when installed in the ceiling it will not have a significant effect at surfaces like tabletops. For actual disinfection, a 405 nm device should have roughly 50-100 W power when installed in the ceiling. Most often these devices are meant for slight environmental antimicrobial activity and have less power.

The best performing group - Spectral Blue devices - are actual disinfection devices that utilize multi-wavelength blue light. The efficacy of Spectral Blue has been proven by accredited laboratories and in real-life use. Spectral Blue devices are the only group that can be used to reduce the use of chemical disinfectants and to replace ultraviolet radiation (UVC).

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blue light plug&play