The key novel aspect of the technology that won the award is the fact that unlike conventional lamp systems, the bulbs are excited through the application of microwaves, rather than electric currents. This approach overcomes the disadvantages of previous systems such as the cumbersome and costly nature, as well as offering many additional benefits including an increase in bulb lifetime
The technology is suitable for the traditional ultraviolet applications such as drinking water disinfection, as well as novel applications including the disinfection of food products to extend shelf life and product stability, and the treatment of odors.
Marketed by Quay Environmentala company which Atkins formed in collaboration with Quay Technologies, a small technology development firmthe Quay System is protected by a number of worldwide patents.
Competition for the award was intense, with 30 other new innovations from the area competing for the win. The certificate was presented at the Quay Technologies laboratory in Birkenhead by two members of the judging panel.