Over the past few years, several companies have entered the UVC disinfection market with claims of autonomous systems that make the process easier and more effective.

Some claim that autonomous and/or “self-propelled” devices reduce cycle times and increase surface disinfection. However, many of these claims have not been backed by data and research.

What does “autonomous” mean?

“Autonomous” technology refers to any technology that can function and execute tasks without being controlled by a human. Autonomous devices learn from their surroundings and complete tasks without continued human input.

Robots, both functional and humanoids, drones and vehicles are a few examples of autonomous devices. Autonomous technology and devices can make their own decisions and act differently based on their surrounding environments.

Tru-D® SmartUVC — the original autonomous UVC device

Based on the definition, all of the Tru-D devices, including both Tru-D Classic and the Tru-D iQ system, all operate autonomously.

Tru-D SmartUVC, launched in 2007 and now part of PDI Healthcare’s environment of care solutions, was the pioneer in autonomous UVC disinfection technology. Both the Tru-D Classic device and the new, state-of-the-art Tru-D iQ system use one-touch operation with a controller outside the room and require a single placement within the room while ensuring thorough room disinfection throughout the space.

The process is automated by the Tru-D devices’ Sensor360® technology, which adapts to each unique space to administer the necessary UVC dose needed for thorough room disinfection.

Dedicated to results, backed by science

Tru-D SmartUVC takes pride in the research and science behind its products and looks to expand upon the solid data that validates the technology to provide facilities with evidence-based best practices.

The Tru-D Classic device has more than a dozen pieces of scientific literature that back its efficacy claims.

Further, the all-new Tru-D iQ system has shown positive results when tested against microorganisms in direct, line of sight and shadowed areas in independent lab testing and has been shown to inactivate unwanted microorganisms in as little as five minutes.

Tru-D devices

  • Sensor360® instrument-grade sensors calculate an accurately timed cycle, ensuring thorough room disinfection.
  • Tru-D iQ Tower utilizes lamp heaters to reduce the bulb warm-up time, reaching maximum output very quickly.
  • Dynamic Dosing autonomously shifts available lamp power to areas of lower reflectivity and optimizes the distribution of UVC within a room, effectively reducing cycle time without compromising efficacy.
  • No room mapping required, shortening the learning curve for operators.
  • Operator setup and the Tru-D iQ Controller user interface is very simple to use with limited training needed.
  • Multiple safety barriers — motion and UVC safety sensors inside and outside of the room.
  • Registered Federal EPA establishment facility and nine state registrations.

Competitive self-propelled autonomous devices

  • Battery operated with two-hour lifespan limits the amount of power to the bulbs as well as use time.
  • Require bulbs to heat for more than three minutes prior to cycle.
  • Room mapping required to run cycle, providing UVC to the perimeter of the room with no confirmation that a lethal dose is delivered to any single surface.
  • Operator mapping is tedious. Even with the ability to record the map, room contents change constantly, requiring re-mapping.
  • Rely on motion sensors for safety.
  • Some registered as EPA establishment facility. Most do not have EPA state registrations.

Real-world evidence

In a head-to-head trial comparing the Tru-D iQ system and a self-propelled, autonomous device, a customer found the following:

Tru-D iQ Tower performance1 

  • 0 minutes to map room
  • 17:30 minute avg. cycle time – (maximum cycle)
  • Easy, simple set up of 2 minutes
  • Measured, precise dose of UVC provided to room surfaces by integrated sensor array

Other autonomous device performance1 

  • 12 minutes to map room
  • 12:00 minute cycle time
  • Difficult to use/operate
  • No measurement of UVC provided

Have questions or comments about autonomous UVC disinfection systems? Contact us at info@tru-d.com.

  1. Data on file.