Researchers at Glyndŵr University in Wrexham, Wales turned a common microwave into a plasma generating equipment sterilizer. By placing a vacuum vessel into the microwave, they were able to generate O and O3 rich plasma that is highly oxidizing and disinfecting. The system costs less than £2000 to manufacture and is small and mobile compared to current commercial plasma disinfection devices.
From Glyndŵr University:
Dr Wright [Dr Andy Wright, Senior Research Scientist] said that tests have shown the technology to be just as effective as existing steam-based methods of sterilisation, if not more – but at a fraction of the cost.
The device is capable of sterilizing equipment in five minutes or less with air.
“The technology now exists for hospitals, surgeries and dentists to move away from steam-based sterilisation methods and take up a plasma-based approach that has been shown to be 100% effective against the most difficult pathogens.
"And as the cost is far less, it’s well suited for use in small doctor, dentist or veterinary surgeries.
"Items such as small surgical instruments can be quickly sterilised prior to use.
“However, one of the main advantages is its small size and low weight.
"It means it can also be used easily by military field hospitals when coupled with a small portable generator.
"Instruments do not have to be sent away for treatment and the cost of using disposable items can be reduced.”