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UV lamps emit high-intensity UV-C light at a wavelength of 253.7nm and are very effective at killing harmful germs and bacteria. Because of this, they are also often referred to as ‘germicidal lamps’. Now more than ever, we are all well aware of the risk of contracting and spreading viruses and bacteria in public places.

As a known disinfectant for air, surfaces, objects and water UV lamps have been used extensively for over 40 years in residential, commercial, industrial and healthcare settings. In this article, we will explore the many different applications that UV lamps are commonly used for.


UV Water Disinfection

Unlike chemical approaches to water disinfection, UV lamps provide rapid and effective inactivation of microorganisms through a physical process. When bacteria, viruses and protozoa are exposed to the germicidal wavelengths of UV light, they are rendered incapable of reproducing and infecting.

UV lamps also provide a safe and efficient alternative to harmful chemicals that create pollution in rivers, oceans and other bodies of water. Whether for private households or in a commercial setting, germicidal UV lamps can be used in the following applications for water disinfection:

  • Boreholes, wells and spring fed water supplies
  • Ponds, aquariums and fish farms
  • Water dispensers
  • Food and drink processing
  • Water works
  • Swimming pools
  • Ultra-pure water systems


UV Air Purification

UV air filtration uses state-of-the-art ultraviolet light technology to keep viruses and other microorganisms from reproducing and infecting a home, office, or other indoor space. An effective air purification system often combines UV lamp technology with a traditional filter in order to maximize both the removal of particulate matter from the air and the killing of germs and bacteria.

UV purification is most effective when the microorganisms have prolonged contact with the UV lamp. The longer that a virus or other organism is bathed in UV light, the greater the damage to its DNA and its ability to replicate itself. Many hospitals safely and easily use UV lamps for sterilizing surgical equipment as well as the air in operating rooms. Other common applications for UV air purification are:

  • Clean rooms
  • Hospitals
  • Doctors’ surgeries
  • Offices with or without air conditioning units
  • Storage rooms
  • Food processing
  • Areas with frequent public access


UV Surface Sterilisation

The disinfection of surfaces is perhaps the simplest and most predictable application of ultraviolet germicidal radiation. UV surface sterilisation is used to kill germs and prevent the spread of bacteria and fungi. Packaging materials can be efficiently and easily disinfected using UV-C radiation. Likewise, the shelf life of food produce can be improved using UV light.

The success of UV surface disinfection will vary according to the specific application. This relates to both the type of germ (e.g. bacterium coli and their stains) and to the texture of the surface. Disinfection can only occur if the germs see the UVC. This means that the texture of the exposed surface must not be too coarse.

Typical examples of applications for UV surface sterilisation include:

  • Uses in the food and pharmaceutical industries
  • Health care
  • In hospitals and other aseptic zones


ELC Lamps Online

ELC are specialist suppliers of Philips and Osram UV-C light bulbs and lamps. Osram and Philips have a strong reputation for producing high-quality UV lamps and germicidal lamps. They provide almost constant uv output over the useful lifetime of the lamp – ideal for highly effective sterilisation and purification. We supply UV lamps for homes, businesses, hospitals, GPs, schools, and much more.

Click here to browse our full range of UV lamps, or shop by category using our dropdown menu at the top.

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