District 11 is moving fast to add some new technology in the battle against COVID-19. This week, Coon Rapids High School got an upgrade to its ventilation system, which is thanks to funding from the federal CARES Act.
The Anoka-Hennepin School District is working with the Global Plasma Systems company to install dozens of ionizer devices in its schools. The devices generate ions through an electronic charge.
These powerful ion generating devices have been called a game changer in the fight against COVID-19.
"Here at Coon Rapids High School we're beginning the phase of a district-wide installation of a needle-point bipolar ionization system," said Anoka-Hennepin’s Chief Operations Officer, Greg Cole.
Cole is overseeing the installation of these small blue boxed devices, which will be eventually be in all 51 buildings across the Anoka-Hennepin District..
The GPS system uses patented technology which produces a high concentration of ions, and delivers them throughout the building by way of the ventilation system. The cleaning process is effective against pathogens, since contact with ions disrupts the surface proteins of the pathogens, thereby rendering them inactive. And that includes COVID-19.
“When they inactivate the virus, it’s not just the airborne virus,” Cole said, “it’s what’s on surfaces as well,”
“And In sixty minutes, 99.4% of the COVID virus has been deactivated,” remarked District 11 Buildings and Grounds Director, Steve Anderson.
Anderson said the school district bought special handheld meters which they'll use to detect the number of cubic ions within a space or room.
"We can test the number of ions,” said Anderson. “If we're not seeing the number of ions that we believe should, then we increase the number of ionizers in to the duct work to inject more ions."
Quality indoor air is just one more way in which schools can protect students and staff.
“It goes right along with the social distancing, the mask wearing, the washing of your hands,” said Anderson. “We’re just trying to put another piece to that puzzle.
District officials hope to have all of the installations done by the end of November, and the systems up and running by mid-December.