UBCO researchers create liquid that repels viruses, including COVID-19 | iNFOnews | Thompson-Okanagan's News Source

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UBCO researchers create liquid that repels viruses, including COVID-19

UBCO master's student Behrooz Khatir measures liquid to be applied to an omniphobic film during testing inside the OPERA lab at UBC Okanagan’s School of Engineering.
Image Credit: UBCO

A new liquid that can repel germs by acting like an invisible force field on personal protective equipment worn by frontline heath care workers, has been developed by researchers at UBC Okanagan.

The new coating repels almost any substance from a surface, according to a UBCO media release. The coating makes cleaning personal protective equipment easier. Surfaces that can repel a broad range of liquids are called omniphobic. 

Working in assistant engineering professor Kevin Golovin's lab, master's student Behrooz Khatir created the spray-on solution that can make any surface — including a face shield — omniphobic.

READ MORE: UBCO professor wants to know how COVID-19 has changed travel

“This new formulation can coat and protect just about any surface, including metals, paper, ceramics and even plastics,” Golovin said in the release. Previously, these coatings could only be applied to silicon wafers or smooth glass.

"Not only does the coating repel countless substances, but even under harsh exposures like UV light, acids and high temperatures, the coating maintains its resistance qualities. The coating can also easily be replaced and repaired," Golovin said. 

The original research was recently published in the ACS Applied Materials & Interfaces journal.

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