February 2, 2023
Last Updated On:
February 2, 2023

PCO Technology: Is It The Innovative Solution For Air Purification?

Learn about PCO technology, how it works, how effective it is, and how it compares to Radiant Catalytic Ionization.

Last Updated On:
February 2, 2023

Air pollution has been a growing concern for many years, and with the increased amount of time spent indoors due to the pandemic, indoor air quality has become an even more pressing issue. This is where PCO technology comes in, providing a solution for those looking to improve their indoor air quality and live in a cleaner and healthier environment. In this blog, we'll explore PCO technology, how it works, how effective of a solution it is, and how PCO compares to radiant Catalytic Ionization (RCI) Technology.

What is PCO Technology?

PCO stands for Photocatalytic Oxidation, a cutting-edge air purification technology that utilizes light energy to break down pollutants and bacteria in the air. It is a highly effective way to improve indoor air quality, making it a popular choice for commercial environments. PCO technology has been around for several decades; however, only in recent years that it has become widely available in air purifiers due to advancements in the materials used in the catalytic process.

PCO Air Purifier Cartridge Filter

How does PCO Technology Work?

PCO technology-based air purifiers use light energy to activate a catalytic process that breaks down pollutants and bacteria in the air. The UV light energy emitted and absorbed by a photocatalyst triggers a chemical reaction that destroys pollutants and bacteria within the catalytic chamber. The byproducts of this reaction can contain substances such as water, and carbon dioxide. However, unlike active air purification technologies, PCO systems leverage passive air purification and can only reduce airborne pathogens that pass through the system itself.

In addition to the photocatalyst, PCO technology utilizes a UV light source. This UV light source is responsible for providing the light energy needed to activate the photocatalyst. The UV light source is typically made up of one or more high-intensity incandescent lamps or LEDs, which emit UV light that is absorbed by the photocatalyst.

UV Light On The Visible Light Spectrum

Advantages of PCO Technology Air Purifiers

Air purifiers with PCO technology offer several advantages over traditional mechanical filtration-based air purification methods, including:

1 - Effective At Reducing Airborne Contaminants: 

PCO technology has been shown to effectively remove a wide range of pollutants and bacteria, including volatile organic compounds (VOCs), mold, and allergens. This advantage makes it an ideal solution for facilities with occupants that suffer from seasonal allergies or breathing difficulties.

2- Low System Maintenance: 

Unlike traditional air purifiers, PCO technology does not require frequent filter changes, making it a low-maintenance solution for improving indoor air quality. This advantage is convenient for facilities that want to improve their air quality without worrying about ongoing maintenance and high consumables.

3- Quiet System Operation:

PCO air purifiers are often quiet and produce noise at lowered decibel levels, making them ideal for use in offices and learning environments. This advantage is significant for facilities that need an air quality solution that does not disrupt the function of their indoor environment with high amounts of noise pollution.

4- Longer Technology Lifespan: 

PCO technology does not rely on traditional filtration media, which must be replaced regular cadence. Instead, the photocatalyst used in PCO technology is designed to last for 12 to 24 months, meaning that you won't need to replace it as often as you would with traditional air purifiers.

Office Conference Room Protected By PCO Air Purifier

Applications of PCO Technology

PCO technology has a wide range of applications, making it an ideal solution for improving indoor air quality in many different environments. Some of the most common applications of PCO technology include:

1 - Commercial Buildings And Offices: 

PCO technology is also a great solution for offices, as it can improve the air quality in a large workspace, creating a healthier environment for employees.

2- K-12 Schools And Higher Education: 

PCO technology is also suitable for schools, as it can help improve air quality and reduce common airborne pathogens found in learning environments. PCO air purifiers with lower noise operation is also perfect in classrooms where auditory listening is critical to instruction and student experience.

3- Hospitals And Healthcare Facilities: 

PCO technology is especially important for healthcare facilities, where air quality is crucial for maintaining the health and well-being of patients and staff. Hospitals and other medical facilities also benefit from PCO technology, as it can help reduce the spread of harmful bacteria and other pathogens, which can have severe consequences in a medical environment.

LED UV Light In Photocatalytic Oxidation Air Purifier

How Does PCO Technology Compare To RCI Technology?

RCI technology uses the production of energy in the UV-C range (irradiation), striking a titanium dioxide-based proprietary photocatalyst forming "air scrubbing molecules." These "air-scrubbing molecules," including; oxidizers (hydroxyl radicals, superoxides, hydroxide, and hydrogen peroxide), cause the decomposition of viral/bacterial materials through continuous oxidation, resulting in byproducts, including CO2 and water in the air.​

ActivePure The Smarter Choice

In comparison to PCO technology, RCI technology carries all the same benefits while incorporating several additional key advantages. Firstly, RCI's active air purification is not contained within the system, unlike PCO technology. RCI technology's "air-scrubbing molecules" can be distributed throughout an entire space reducing a greater range of airborne pathogens. Secondly, RCI technology is the basis of proactive air purification technology, ActivePure. ActivePure, featured in a wide range of commercially used portable and HVAC induct air purifiers, has been rigorously tested for efficacy and safety.

How Does RCI Radiant Catalytic Ionization Work?

Is PCO Technology The Right Choice For My Facility?

PCO technology is an innovative and highly effective solution for air purification, offering many advantages over traditional air purification methods. It is a safe, low-maintenance, and environmentally friendly way to improve indoor air quality, making it an ideal choice for offices, schools, and healthcare facilities. 

However, if you are looking for an active form of air purification that truly is the long-term solution for your facility, then look no further than RCI and ActivePure Technology. With a broader range of air purification form factors, scalability in design, and backed by proven efficacy and safety testing. ActivePure can transform the air quality in your facilities to support healthier indoor environments for every space and every occupant.

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