While most of his Capitals teammates are waiting out the coronavirus pandemic, Lars Eller is putting time into trying to stop it.
The Danish center, who scored the Capitals’ 2018 Stanley Cup-winning goal, is donating a Cleanse Portal to a D.C. homeless shelter in Northwest called Central Union Mission.
The Cleanse Portal inactivates bacteria and viruses on skin, clothing, and goods.
The Portal Eller donated is made by a company called Healthe, based in Florida. It looks like a metal detector, but instead of measuring magnetic waves, it emits far-UVC light, which the company says “inactivates over 90% of contaminants” in 20 seconds.
Most ultraviolet applications are not safe for humans because they can cause skin cancer and harm eyes, but the Portal uses a far-UVC light that does not harm humans. According to a paper published by researchers at Columbia University and provided to RMNB by the company, the far-UVC light “cannot penetrate even the outer (non-living) layers of human skin or eye.”
“There has been a lot of focus on supporting frontline workers and first responders in this pandemic, and that’s really important, but I want to make sure the homeless community isn’t overlooked,” Eller said. “Many of us are fortunate to be able to stay home and avoid exposure to the virus, but there are a lot of people in our city who don’t have access to a safe haven like that. I’m honored to be able to donate this Portal to Central Union Mission and help reduce the risk that their employees and guests are exposed to COVID-19 and other harmful pathogens.”
The Portal made news in the D.C. area a few weeks ago when Pinkston, a Northern Virginia communications firm that installed it and other far-UVC lights, was featured in news reports for the technologies it is using in efforts to combat coronavirus.
“The coronavirus has shown that the traditional model of nightly cleaning is not a sufficient barrier against aggressive viruses,” Pinkston says on its website. “In the new normal, we need solutions that will continuously sanitize throughout the day to add extra layers of protection between those nightly cleaning sessions. … When we welcome employees and guests back, it will be to what we believe is the safest office environment on the planet, and a model for the new normal of office safety and health.”
Central Union Mission is the oldest private social service agency in Washington, D.C., and is committed to serving homeless men, underprivileged women, children, seniors, families, and veterans.
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