Rhode Island Patent of the Month – June 2021

Money and banknotes are some of the most commonly handled surfaces in our day to day lives. Studies have shown that viruses like COVID-19 can last up to 28 days at a temperature of 20° C. on both polymer banknotes and paper banknotes. These studies also show that a banknote would need to be exposed to 200° C for two hours to be sterilized, but temperatures above 100° C will damage them. Lower temperatures would require incredibly long sterilization times. Spectra Systems Corp. has designed a more effective sterilization method to help remove pathogens and viruses from banknotes.

Their system utilizes an oxygen-free environment combined with temperatures in a range of 60° C to 200° C to achieve sterilization. Without oxygen, the banknotes can better withstand a range of temperatures without damage. With the use of a nitrogen gas atmosphere, temperatures as low as 60° C can deactivate or kill the pathogens within 1-5 hours. They utilize a nitrogen generating system which extracts oxygen from the heating oven and fills it with nitrogen at the same time. The system can be configured to integrate with an ATM machine, armored vehicle, or even a bank vault to provide sterilization as often as possible. This system provides a safe and effective pathogen killing method that does not damage the money.

Are you developing new technology for an existing application? Did you know your development work could be eligible for the R&D Tax Credit and you can receive up to 14% back on your expenses? Even if your development isn’t successful your work may still qualify for R&D credits (i.e. you don’t need to have a patent to qualify). To find out more, please contact a Swanson Reed R&D Specialist today or check out our free online eligibility test.

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