As part of the global fight against the Covid-19 pandemic, Irish company Kastus recently announced its partnership with Inficraft – a South Korea based touchscreen manufacturing company specializing in the custom development and distribution of the industrial-grade touchscreen product and technology solutions for the various market sectors since 2013.
Kastus, which is supported by Enterprise Ireland and with origins from the Technological University Dublin, will be offering its pioneering patent 24/7 antimicrobial coating technology as a standard for the Inficraft touchscreen product portfolio. Antimicrobial coating has recently been proven to effective against Covid-19 on surfaces, in a recent study conducted by a leading global test laboratory.
” Antimicrobial coatings are critical in this moment to help give consumers an enhanced level of protection when using shared touch screens.
Kastus’s unique patent coating uses ambient moisture and light as a fuel source to generate oxygen radicals, a type of unstable molecule that contains oxygen, which attaches to bacteria and viruses and works to kill them. This same unique patent coating has also been previously proven to be effective in blocking up to 99.99 per cent of surface bacteria and fungi including antibiotic-resistant superbugs such as MRSA and E. coli.
This new partnership with Inficraft is set to help instil a greater level of confidence amongst consumers and businesses. The factory-applied coating technology is sprayed on and sintered on to the product during the manufacturing process, forming an extremely durable immobilised thin coating, through its ‘always on’ screen protection which is crucial for the use of shared touch screens. This comes at a time where concerns relating to exposure to surface bacteria and viruses via interactions on shared touch surfaces are at an all-time high.
The Kastus patented 24/7 Antimicrobial coating technology offers enhanced ‘always on’ screen protection and gives consumers the added confidence to interact with shared screen areas. We are delighted to announce this partnership as we continue our strategy to roll out Kastus technology across Global markets and categories in the touchscreen space”
Founder and CEO of Kastus John Browne was first introduced to the ground-breaking technology by Enterprise Ireland, when it emerged out of Ireland’s third-level sector a number of years ago. This was a time when touch screen technology had yet to proliferate.
Browne immediately saw the potential for antimicrobial surface coatings, recognising that “the world was progressing with a clear move towards touch screens”. These range from touchpoints at F&B kiosks, during air travel, to employees managing inventory in factories via hand-held devices. Browne saw that the drive towards automation was also a drive towards touch screen technology.
Adding that most manufacturing companies had yet to give much thought to the fact that these high touch surfaces were not properly sanitised despite the investment in screen technologies, Browne knew that it was not enough for screen technologies to be cleaned with a wet cloth which can only further spread microbes across and between surfaces.
Since then, the company has gone on to secure clients across North America, Europe, and Asia Pacific. Kastus is a partner to clients the likes of Zagg, a leading US producer of screen protectors for tablets and smart phones, and Oman-based tile company Al Maha Ceramics, which has reach in markets across Asia and Africa. Going beyond touch screen technologies, the company is also working with floor tile makers for tiles designed for use in residential, commercial, and healthcare settings. Browne predicts that Kastus’s coating technology will, in time, become mandated as a standard finish under national building regulations.
Despite the scale of the pandemic, Kastus is well positioned to ramp up production to meet demand, with its RD&I team lead by Dr James Kennedy having developed a manufacturing process that is able to meet serious demand volume as it comes.
Following the Covid-19 outbreak at the start of the year during a meeting with Taiwanese and Chinese business contacts, Kastus has since gone on to receive €1.6m in funding from the European Innovation Council funding for projects focused on tackling the Coronavirus that causes Covid-19, and has invested more than €1 million in worldwide patent protection for its antimicrobial technology.