Coronavirus Pandemic

Covid-19: UAE students create device to prevent spread of virus

Ismail Sebugwaawo /Abu Dhabi Filed on August 1, 2021
Supplied photo

Sterilisation materials can be applied on an institution’s door handles to further enhance pupils' public health safety.

A Dubai school’s five pupils have created a handy device and sterilisation materials that can be used on an institution’s door handles to prevent the spread of the raging Covid-19 outbreak and to further enhance their peers’ public health safety.

The Grade VI pupils from GEMS Founders School Al Mizhar in Dubai said the innovation was precautionary measures to control the spread of Covid-19 and to ensure the safe return of their peers for in-classroom teaching in the new academic year that starts in September.

Maryam Allawi, Muhammad Ibrahim, Muhammad Zayan, Youssef Mahfouz, and Zeina Naim are the brains behind the innovative project.

They said that they were keen on finding a more effective alternative to chemical-based sterilisation and cleaning materials.

Their innovation consists of a glass tube surrounding the door handle and covered with a casing of ground titanium dioxide.

The thin casing can dismantle bacteria through a chemical reaction stimulated by ultraviolet (UV) rays.

The pupils relied on the fact that the door has equipment that produces kinetic energy. They also added Arduino-based temperature sensors and an LED screen in a bid to monitor the temperature of all those passing through the door.

“This device acts as an alarm system similar to the current thermal cameras that we find in schools, shopping malls and other public places, but with minimal human intervention. This project is a low-cost alternative to current door handles and reduces the risk of major infections with viral diseases,” said one of the innovators.

They said that they presented the idea of the project as a solution that helps reduce the risks of spreading of Covid-19 to protect their community members.

They were also keen on applying the practical skills they have learned in computer science lessons at school through an innovative project with the help of their teachers.

Saba Adnan, director of Innovation and Technology at GEMS Founders School, Al Mizhar, praised the innovative project and stressed that the pupils were working on presenting the idea to the "Global Innovation Challenge" in the next few months.

“The project has been shared with the Dubai Police,” he added.


Ismail Sebugwaawo

A professional journalist originating from Kampala, Uganda, Ismail is a happy father with strong attachment to family and great values for humanity. He has practiced journalism in UAE for the past 13 years, covering the country's parliament (FNC) and crimes, including Abu Dhabi Police, public prosecution and courts. He also reports about important issues in education, public health and the environment, with a keen interest in human interest stories. When out of reporting duties, he serves the Ugandan community in Abu Dhabi as he wants to see his countrymen happy. Exercising and reading are part of his free time.

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