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Cleaner surfaces for healthier hospitals

Millidyne specialises in advanced materials and surface treatment technologies featuring benefits such as enhanced hygiene and cleanability, corrosion and wear resistance, and novel electrical properties. Its Avalon coatings are not only easy to keep clean, they are also very effective at preventing bacteria from living or multiplying on surfaces – making the technology ideal for hospitals and food manufacturing plants.

The multifunctional coatings and nanocomposites developed and marketed by Millidyne are based on its Sol-Gel technology, a wet chemical method that produces coatings with a typical thickness of often less than 0.5 µm. Components of widely varying sizes and shapes can be dip-coated, sprayed, or spin- or brush-coated.

Surfaces treated in this way can incorporate a variety of properties, such as enhanced mechanical durability, hydrophobicity or oleophobicity, and corrosion resistance, as well as special optical, decorative, and electrical features. Further options are provided by inorganic-organic nanocomposites and self-organising nanostructures. Combining different organic and inorganic components can yield unique sets of properties that cannot be achieved using conventional materials or surface treatment techniques.

Easy to clean and anti-microbial too

Millidyne’s Avalon family includes easy-to-clean, anti-microbial coatings for metal, glass, ceramic, and plastic surfaces.

Trial coatings of Millidyne’s new Avalon 22 anti-microbial coating have been applied at a number of hospitals in Helsinki, and the results have been very positive.

Staining and dirt build-up is lower compared to conventional surfaces and, thanks to the biocide anchored in these coatings, they have a long-lasting anti-microbial effect and offer better hygiene with less cleaning and downtime than other surfaces.

Recent tests on the viability of two typical hospital microbes – Pseudomonas aeruginosa and Staphylococcus aureus – on uncoated stainless steel and stainless steel coated with Millidyne’s recently launched Avalon 22 have shown very conclusively that the coated material inhibits bacterial growth to a significant degree. Surfaces coated with Avalon 22 have attained a low bacterial count some 10 times faster than uncoated ones.

Avalon 22 offers a similar level of performance in respect of Clostridium difficile, which is rapidly emerging as a growing problem in hospitals, not only because of its resistance to antibiotics, but also because traditional alcohol-based disinfectants are not effective at eliminating its presence from surfaces.

Surfaces can be easily coated with Avalon 22, simply by brush, roller, or dip coating. Avalon 22 bonds chemically to the surface, forming a thin invisible film that cures at room temperature within a matter of hours. The treatment can be reapplied when needed without removing the old layer first.

Suitable for all stainless steel, glass, and ceramic surfaces, Avalon 22 is ideal for clean rooms, bathrooms and toilets, lifts, kitchens, equipment, as well as surfaces that are repeatedly touched by people, such as keyboards, door handles, and light switches.

> Mika Kolari
(Published in HighTech Finland 2008)