Etihad Airways has become one of the first airlines to get involved in Boeing’s trial of a new prototype ultraviolet (UV) wand designed to disinfect aircraft flight decks and cabins.
UV light can be scanned inches away from aircraft interior surfaces, disinfecting areas and surfaces where the light reaches.
Testing is ongoing to fully validate its effectiveness and safety for operators and materials. UV light has been shown to be effective at neutralising pathogens. Testing against the Covid-19 virus is ongoing, Boeing said.
Boeing’s proposed concept in development is a mobile, hand-held UV disinfecting wand that can access compact spaces. A single operator can treat a flight deck in less than 15 minutes with a UV wand, the company said.
Etihad has been providing feedback on the second-generation prototype which is now being tested on the airline’s 787 Dreamliner ecoDemonstrator.
The UV wand is being deployed as part of Boeing’s Confident Travel Initiative, which aims to boost confidence among passengers and encourage people to start flying commercially again.
The UV wand is a continuation of Boeing’s work using ultraviolet disinfection in the lavatory. Boeing is also assessing persistent UV (using a different wavelength) that disinfects continuously for potential use in flight decks, lavatories, galleys and cabins.