Is UV Light Safe?

The UV light that is used in industries is called UV-C, which refers to ultraviolet light in wavelengths of 200-280 nanometers. While it can destroy the function of bacteria, UV-C is used carefully. Ultraviolet disinfection is often done in unoccupied rooms, or placed overhead, as a high dose of UV can damage the skin and the eyes.

Often, UVC lamps are placed out of sight to shield people from risks of prolonged exposure. In hospitals, workers have to wait until rooms are unoccupied before disinfecting with ultraviolet light.

However, scientists are working on far-UVC, which has a shorter wavelength (222 nanometers) but higher energy. This means that it can kill pathogens faster and more efficiently, without penetrating the skin and the eyes. Far-UVC can be used to disinfect rooms even with people inside, making it more practical.