Copper Armor paint to slow COVID spread
PPG infusing paint with Corning's antimicrobial copper glass Metal Tech News – December 9, 2020
Last updated 12/18/2020 at 4:50am
A fresh coat of Copper Armor, an antimicrobial paint developed by Corning Inc. and PPG, could transform surfaces at high-risk for the spread of COVID-19 into self-sanitizing areas that are deadly to bacteria and viruses.
Leveraging the glass and ceramic expertise that makes its kitchenware a staple in homes around the globe, Corning has developed a copper infused glass matrix that is a highly effective and continuous killer of germs, including the virus that causes COVID-19.
Known as Corning Guardiant, this antimicrobial glass was invented with the idea that it could be mixed in with paints and coatings that transform surfaces at high risk for the transmission of disease into constant and long-term kill zones for bacteria and viruses.
"We strive to create innovations that make the world a better place," said Corning Chairman and CEO Wendell Weeks. "Our scientists have developed this unique paint additive using our highly engineered glass-ceramic technology. We are excited about the new lab results and look forward to working with our valued partner PPG."
Using test methods approved by the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency, paint and coatings containing Guardiant were shown to kill more than 99.9% of SARS-CoV-2, the virus that causes COVID-19.
In addition to SARS, testing shows that Guardiant has the ability to kill a wide range of bacteria and viruses within two hours. This includes bacteria responsible for staph infections and murine norovirus, which belongs to the hardest-to-kill class of viruses in terms of its susceptibility to disinfectants.
This glass matrix was designed by Corning scientists to keep the most effective form of copper readily available for reducing harmful germs for many years after it is applied.
Under the EPA-approved testing methods that simulated six years of scrubbing, surfaces coated with Guardiant-enhanced paint continued to be effective at killing the severe acute respiratory syndrome responsible for COVID-19.
Living up to its motto – "We protect and beautify the world" – PPG is developing paints and coatings infused with the bacteria and virus killing qualities of Guardiant.
"PPG is proud to partner with Corning to continue innovating and creating solutions that address our customers' greatest needs," said PPG Chairman and CEO Michael McGarry. "We know that now more than ever, our customers are seeking multiple layers of protection as they navigate the COVID-19 pandemic."
PPG's Copper Armor paints and coatings, however, must be signed off by the EPA before the company can introduce them to the U.S. markets under any claims about their effectiveness of a self-sanitizing surface that kills SARS-CoV-2.
In October, the federal environmental agency released new guidance that allows companies to demonstrate that their products have "long-lasting" or "residual" effectiveness on surfaces against viruses like SARS-CoV-2.
"EPA is providing an expedited path for our nation's manufacturers and innovators to get cutting-edge, long-lasting disinfecting products into the marketplace as safely and quickly as possible," said EPA Administrator Andrew Wheeler. "As we continue to re-open our schools, workplaces, and other public spaces, it is important Americans have as many tools as possible to slow the spread of COVID-19."
The federal environmental agency has already registered many copper alloys as safe and effective means of fighting the transmission of bacteria and disease. With EPA-approved testing showing a similar effectiveness of Guardiant, PPG is awaiting the agency to similarly register Copper Armor under its new guidance.
"Following registration with the EPA, we look forward to launching a paint product in the coming months that contains Corning Guardiant, providing customers with an additional safeguard from the coronavirus in areas that pose a higher health risk," said McGarry.