Plasma air purifiers, hands-free devices in post-Covid rail coaches

4 months ago 21
google news

NEW DELHI: Provision for plasma air purification, hands-free amenities such as foot-operated soap dispensers and handrails coated with anti-microbial copper are among the features planned to be introduced in coaches by the Indian Railways as it looks to make travel safer post Covid.
Railway minister Piyush Goyal gave an indication when he tweeted: “Future Ready Railway: Designed to fight Coronavirus, Railways creates 1st ‘Post Covid Coach’ with handsfree amenities, copper-coated handrails & latches, plasma air purification, Titanium di-oxide coating…For Covid-free passenger journey!”
The Rail Coach Factory at Kapurthala in Punjab on Tuesday unveiled two such ‘Post Covid coaches’ – one AC and another non-AC. Officials said the coaches have copper coating on handrails and latches, and titanium di-oxide coating to kill viruses.
There is provision of plasma air ionisation equipment in the AC duct that will sterilise the coaches using ionised air to make it Covid-19 free.
Officials said the use of hands to navigate washrooms and other parts has been brought down to a minimum, making them “almost hands-free” by placing foot-operated fixtures including taps, lavatory doors and flush valves in the coaches.A booklet circulated by the railways included several provisions of a host of foot-operated fixtures including taps, soap dispensers, lavatory doors, flush valves and door latches. Outside the toilet is a wash basin with a foot operated tap forearm. Besides, compartment doors have handles operated with the forearm.
Copper has been used for the coating on handrails and latches as it degrades the virus which lands on it within a few hours. ¨Copper also has anti-microbial properties. Thus, when the virus lands on it, the ion blasts the pathogen and destroys the DNA and RNA inside it,” the booklet said.
The coaches will have the provision of plasma air equipment in the AC duct that will sterilise the coaches using ionised air to make it Covid-19 free. Another feature is the “nano-structured titanium dioxide” coating.
“This is an eco-friendly water-based coating that kills viruses, bacteria, mould, and fungal growth and most importantly enhances indoor air quality. It is non-toxic and approved by food testing laboratory of the United States Food & Drug Administration (FDA)… It is considered to be a safe substance, and is harmless for humans,” the booklet said.
The effective life of the coating is 12 months.

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