Sensors (Basel). 2021 Oct 30;21(21):7222. doi: 10.3390/s21217222.
Contamination inspection is an ongoing concern for food distributors, restaurant owners, caterers, and others who handle food. Food contamination must be prevented, and zero tolerance legal requirements and damage to the reputation of institutions or restaurants can be very costly. This paper introduces a new handheld fluorescence-based imaging system that can rapidly detect, disinfect, and document invisible organic residues and biofilms which may host pathogens. The contamination, sanitization inspection, and disinfection (CSI-D) system uses light at two fluorescence excitation wavelengths, ultraviolet C (UVC) at 275 nm and violet at 405 nm, for the detection of organic residues, including saliva and respiratory droplets. The 275 nm light is also utilized to disinfect pathogens commonly found within the contaminated residues. Efficacy testing of the neutralizing effects of the ultraviolet light was conducted for Aspergillus fumigatus, Streptococcus pneumoniae, and the influenza A virus (a fungus, a bacterium, and a virus, respectively, each commonly found in saliva and respiratory droplets). After the exposure to UVC light from the CSI-D, all three pathogens experienced deactivation (> 99.99%) in under ten seconds. Up to five-log reductions have also been shown within 10 s of UVC irradiation from the CSI-D system.