Is ozone dangerous?

Ozone is a gas made up of three molecules of oxygen (O3). Therefore, it is very oxidative, which means that it binds well to microorganisms and thus destroys them. Inhalation of ozone, however, causes dizziness, headaches and nausea in humans, so it must be handled with care.

The ozone-disinfected area must be ventilated after ozonation, and ozone-operated devices (shopUVCube, UVCabinet, larger UVCube models) must have a catalyst that breaks down ozone back into oxygen. Ozone itself is also a very unstable gas that decomposes back to oxygen within some hours. Therefore, we use it in our devices as an additional method of disinfection, which speeds up the process itself or makes it more thorough.

Ozone safety requirements to protect humans against long-term toxic effects from high ozone concentrations generated by UV-C devices with emission wavelengths below 240 nm.

The limits are derived from section 7.3 in IEC 62368-1 [4] and are for long-term ozone exposures limited to 0.1 ppm per volume (≈ 200 µg/m3) calculated as an eight hours’ time-weighted average concentration.

Table – Alternative ozone exposure levels

Country/organisationLevel [µg/m3]Source
WHO100World Health Organisation ambient (outdoor) air pollution
EU120Directive 2008/50/EC, annex 7
US (EPA)1402015 National Ambient Air Quality Standards (NAAQS) for Ozone
China160TOAR: China is Hot Spot of Ground-Level Ozone Pollution
29 August 2018

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