United Airlines is introducing a new antimicrobial treatment into its aircraft cabin cleaning procedures. The product, SprayZoono Microbe Shield, was developed by Zoono Group, and is an EPA-registered antimicrobial coating that bonds with surfaces to inhibit the growth of microbes.
United is applying the coating on more than 30 aircraft each week, to seats, tray tables, armrests, overhead bins, lavatories and crew stations, and expects to add this latest measure to its entire mainline and express fleet before the end of the year. The coating will serve as an added layer of protection, complementing the airline’s existing, daily electrostatic spraying regimen before departing flights.
“As part of our layered approach to safety, antimicrobials are an effective complement to our hospital-grade HEPA air filtration system, mandatory mask policy for customers and daily electrostatic spraying. We’ve overhauled our policies and procedures and continue to implement new, innovative solutions that deliver a safer onboard experience,” said Toby Enqvist, United’s chief customer officer.
The Zoono Microbe Shield works by bonding to surfaces and creating a protective layer that resembles microscopic ‘pins’ once dry, which rupture cell walls and membranes when microbes come in contact with them. The chemical is classified by the EPA as Category IV, which is the lowest level of toxicity.
During an aircraft deep clean, United will use the NovaRover, which is designed to apply a super-fine mist of the antimicrobial that coats all surfaces in a 12-foot radius with a single spray. United will apply the antimicrobial to aircraft overnight every seven days using electrostatic sprayers, to refresh and fortify the protective layer.
United is currently applying Zoono Microbe Shield on aircraft at Chicago O’Hare International Airport and expects to expand it in the coming months, to each of its six other hubs and approximately 200 US airports where United aircraft remain overnight. The airline plans to deploy NovaRovers at 10 airports, including each of United’s seven hubs, as well as Boston, Cleveland and Las Vegas.