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The coronavirus pandemic has spurred global demand for UV-C LED disinfection applications, and such demand is expected to persist until 2022, according to industry sources.
Before the pandemic, UV-C LED chips were much less used in disinfection than in UV mercury lamps due to high cost and low power conversion, the sources said. But UV-C LED disinfection applications have the advantages of lower power consumption, longer service lives, no mercury content and smaller dimensions.
Lextar Electronics has shipped UV-C LED to US-based vendors for use in water filtration kettles, and it has offered UV-C LED of 100mA (milliampere) and 13-15mW for use in air conditioners and other home electric appliances.
Epileds Technologies and High Power Lighting have partnered in developing UV-C LED disinfection applications. High Power said that it has obtained certification for a portable disinfectiion device using UV-C LED and begun shipping them to US-based vendors in third-quarter 2020. Epileds is expanding production capacity for UV-C LED to over one million chips a month, with the additional capacity to come into operation in fourth-quarter 2020.
Government-sponsored Industrial Technology Research Institute (ITRI) has cooperated with Innotrio, a maker of water filtration and dispensers for sale under own brand Acuo, to apply UV-C LED to disinfecting running water.
Many China-based LED makers saw first-half 2020 revenues from UV-C LED chips/devices hike over 300% on year, and the growth was as high as 700-800% for some makers, the sources said. Prices for 275nm UV-C LED chips and modules rose 50% and 20% respectively on year in first-half 2020 but are expected to drop in second-half 2020 along with increasing competition, the sources cited China-based hangjianet.com as indicating.