We are creating some awesome events for you. Kindly bear with us.

ANSTO-nandin technology hub team develops cleaning tech

Elavo is an award-winning integrated infection control system for the air and surfaces in enclosed spaces that was proposed in response to COVID-19 as part of a NASA hackathon. The approach combines a NASA air purification technology with a decontamination process to scrub pathogens form the air and keep surfaces sterile in high traffic public spaces, such as elevators, trains and buses.

The system includes technologies to detect external signs of illness, such a high temperature, sneezing and coughing, and is integrated with automatic tap-on/tap-off systems for contact tracing. An ANSTO-nandin technology hub five-member team developed the Elavo concept for the competition over 48 hours using resources from NASA and other space agencies. The system won the “best use of technology” category of the hackathon to develop an innovative air purification solution, beating more than 1400 other team entries.

The team leader said, “NASA stressed that if we want to get public transport operating close to capacity again, we need practical solutions to reduce the potential for contaminated air and surfaces that can be implemented without significant operational or maintenance costs.”

This can be achieved by using commercially available technologies and implemented with minimal disruption to the current operation of transport and mobility systems due to its short deployment time. In developing Elavo, the team undertook their research on the New York City transit system to see if there was a link between high public transport use and higher infection rates and found a correlation. At the time New York was a major epicentre of the disease.

In confined spaces, such as elevators or public transport systems, it is impossible to avoid breathing the exhaled air from other passengers. Pathogens from exhaled air may be inhaled by other passengers or settle on surfaces, such as buttons and armrests. A nandin member, who is also the Founder and CEO of a medical technology start-up, shared a calculation that each person in an enclosed space, such as a lift, will inhale approximately 2% of the exhaled air from passengers.

How Elavo works

In an Elavo system, returned air is drawn down into low mounted ducts. The downward flow of air minimises the distance that exhaled droplets can travel. The returned air is purified by a NASA filtration technology that is currently used to destroy pathogens and volatile organic compounds that build up over time in crewed spacecraft. The air is then processed by the air conditioning system and returned through output ducts in the ceiling.

To avoid infection from contaminated surfaces, Elavo involves the use of a well-established photo-sterilisation technology. High-intensity LED-based far-ultraviolet radiation (UVC) will rapidly kill viruses, bacteria and fungi. The cleaning cycle can be performed both opportunistically when the lift or train carriage is empty and its doors are closed and at periodic intervals.

In a train, sterilisation occurs both before and after a journey. If a potentially infectious passenger is detected by an acoustic system set up to detect sneezes or coughs, the ventilation system temporarily increases the rate of airflow. Thermal cameras are also used to detect any passenger with an elevated temperature.

If these systems are combined with existing identification monitoring technologies, contact tracing can be undertaken.

Looking ahead

The ANSTO-nandin team members have received an invitation to present their projects to NASA and other space organisations. The team has already received expressions of interest from some Australian organisations.


CTC Global Singapore, a premier end-to-end IT solutions provider, is a fully owned subsidiary of ITOCHU Techno-Solutions Corporation (CTC) and ITOCHU Corporation.

Since 1972, CTC has established itself as one of the country’s top IT solutions providers. With 50 years of experience, headed by an experienced management team and staffed by over 200 qualified IT professionals, we support organizations with integrated IT solutions expertise in Autonomous IT, Cyber Security, Digital Transformation, Enterprise Cloud Infrastructure, Workplace Modernization and Professional Services.

Well-known for our strengths in system integration and consultation, CTC Global proves to be the preferred IT outsourcing destination for organizations all over Singapore today.


Planview has one mission: to build the future of connected work. Our solutions enable organizations to connect the business from ideas to impact, empowering companies to accelerate the achievement of what matters most. Planview’s full spectrum of Portfolio Management and Work Management solutions creates an organizational focus on the strategic outcomes that matter and empowers teams to deliver their best work, no matter how they work. The comprehensive Planview platform and enterprise success model enables customers to deliver innovative, competitive products, services, and customer experiences. Headquartered in Austin, Texas, with locations around the world, Planview has more than 1,300 employees supporting 4,500 customers and 2.6 million users worldwide. For more information, visit www.planview.com.


SIRIM is a premier industrial research and technology organisation in Malaysia, wholly-owned by the Minister​ of Finance Incorporated. With over forty years of experience and expertise, SIRIM is mandated as the machinery for research and technology development, and the national champion of quality. SIRIM has always played a major role in the development of the country’s private sector. By tapping into our expertise and knowledge base, we focus on developing new technologies and improvements in the manufacturing, technology and services sectors. We nurture Small Medium Enterprises (SME) growth with solutions for technology penetration and upgrading, making it an ideal technology partner for SMEs.


HashiCorp provides infrastructure automation software for multi-cloud environments, enabling enterprises to unlock a common cloud operating model to provision, secure, connect, and run any application on any infrastructure. HashiCorp tools allow organizations to deliver applications faster by helping enterprises transition from manual processes and ITIL practices to self-service automation and DevOps practices. 


IBM is a leading global hybrid cloud and AI, and business services provider. We help clients in more than 175 countries capitalize on insights from their data, streamline business processes, reduce costs and gain the competitive edge in their industries. Nearly 3,000 government and corporate entities in critical infrastructure areas such as financial services, telecommunications and healthcare rely on IBM’s hybrid cloud platform and Red Hat OpenShift to affect their digital transformations quickly, efficiently and securely. IBM’s breakthrough innovations in AI, quantum computing, industry-specific cloud solutions and business services deliver open and flexible options to our clients. All of this is backed by IBM’s legendary commitment to trust, transparency, responsibility, inclusivity and service.

Send this to a friend