Though the technologies behind ionic air purifiers make a multimillion dollar industry, it is very difficult to find properly documented scientific research about them.For a sound innovation like ionic air purifying, you would expect to have documents of its research and discoveries flooding the internet. But that is not the case. Users would like to know the scientific basis behind this innovation. We would also want to know the efficacy and effectiveness of the technology behind this discovery. And much more, we want to know that the technology is very safe for human use. That though they kill microbes, they are not going to harm humans as well.Somehow, manufacturers of ionic air purifiers have not provided enough information in scientific papers that would assure consumers of the safety, effectiveness and efficacy of their individual brands.Maybe these manufacturers do not expect that some prospective consumers would be interested in the behind-the-scenes technology that birthed the ionic air purifiers.
I am one of those consumers who cared to know the science that led to this technology. I searched the web and found only bits and pieces of information to put together on our subject matter. Some materials I stumbled on are not easily accessible to consumers. They come at a cost that says ‘move no further.’ Imagine, having to pay for some of these scientific research papers per article just so you can have access to them.The manufacturers are probably saying indirectly, that the research papers are for specific people, maybe fellow researchers or serious investors. And not for direct consumers who simply need to know how the product works just for personal use.The scientific world now appears to be commercially and profit driven also, to the detriment of the cause of providing knowledge freely to the all and sundry who cared to know.
These are the criteria behind my search for the ideal ionic air purifier. Safety -is the ionic air purifier technology safe and harmless to its users? Efficacy -has the ionic air purifier been tested in laboratories to really work on the basis of various scientific research that proved successful?Effectiveness -has the ionic air purifier been transported from the lab to its destined operation locations such as homes, offices, factories, schools etc? And the technology has worked well in its new locations?
Let’s talk about the safety of ionic air purifiers. I guess you’d agree with me that this is the most important factor of the above 3. If ionic air purifiers work so well in eliminating microbes but work as much well in harming our health, then it ultimately isn’t safe for us, agreed? So in ascertaining the safety of ionic air purifiers, we’ll be answering these two questions.Are the ions and radicals of the ionic air purifier, named negative ions, bipolar ions, hydroxyl radicals, Sharp’s patent plasmacluster ions safe for our health? Are the by-products of the ionic air purifier, which are ozone and nitric oxides, harmless to our body tissues?
There are no scientific data on the web to tell us whether negative ions, bipolar ions, hydroxyl radicals, plasmacluster ions etc are safe and would not harm the human tissue. But there are plenty of data that show that these ions and radicals eliminate microbes. We want to ascertain here whether their war on microbes is concurrently safe on humans.The confirmed response to this, gotten from a few enquiries with the manufacturers of ionic air purifiers, shows that the hoard of scientific information on ionic air purifiers is to avoid the wrath of animal welfare groups.Many research companies test the safety of their products on animals. Since certain animal welfare groups may rise against these companies, this might be cause for the silence of information on the web from manufacturers about ionic air purifiers.And there is still conflict between animal welfare groups and testing companies. One such company is a UK research company, Huntingdon Life Sciences which conduct safety testing of commercial products, pharmaceutical products and home appliances. In a liquid product test applied to furniture and other home fittings, hydroxyl radicals and superoxide ions that kill microbes are released into the air when UV light shines on the liquid.To ascertain the liquid’s harmlessness to humans, it was tested on mice, guinea pigs and rabbits.To test for acute oral toxicity of the liquid, it was orally fed to mice.To test for primary sick irritation, it was applied to abraded skin of rabbits.To test for its sensitivity to skin, it was injected under guinea pig’s skin.To test for its mutagenicity, the liquid was tested on salmonella bacteria to see if it caused mutation in the bacteria’s nuclei to know if it can cause cancer. Good enough, all the tests came out negative. Concluding from my research gatherings, these are the kinds of test conducted for ionic air purifiers too.So when looking out for the ionic air purifier to buy, check for footnotes from manufacturers of certain brands that tell whether their active ions and radicals have been tested safe. And the safety testing was conducted by a reputable institution with Good Laboratory Practice Accreditation.
All ionic air purifier customers eventually become the human test for these product brands. Manufacturer’s get feedback from customers as the prove of their tests. The down side to this is that we might only hear the good reports and not the bad ones. In any case, most products are tested in similar manner. So we take care to gather all information as much as we can, both good and bad to make the decision to buy our ionic air purifiers.
Ann Hathaway is the CEO of Inflinx Inc. She offers products, workshops and training to improve child health and enhance academic performance. Annhas designed some products for elementary children to address the rise in developmental delays, behavioural disorders, and technology overuse.