Technology, developed to detect biological viruses and threats in hospitals and airports, must be customised to identify the COVID-19 virus in public areas.
Innovate UK has given Durham based Kromek £1.25m to adapt its biological threat detection system. Kromek's radiation-based technology, which uses DNA sequencing, samples the air to mechanically identify and analyse airborne pathogens. As well as virus mutations, the system will be able to test rapidly for SARS-CoV-2's presence.
“Innovate UK grants Kromek £1.25m to adapt its biological threat detection system.“
The project's funding has been awarded under a year and a half programme of UK Research and Innovation, seeking to address and mitigate the pandemic's social, health, cultural, economic and environmental impacts.
CEO of Kromek, Dr Arnab Basu, stated: “We are very pleased to have received backing from UKRI and Innovate UK to progress the deployment of our solution for the detection of airborne COVID-19. Our system can augment the government’s Test and Trace system by enabling early identification of potential exposure to the virus while supporting the safe return of visitors to public spaces like mass transport, retail outlets and entertainment venues. We also believe that the continuous monitoring with our system, which can test for a wide spectrum of viruses as well as mutations of COVID-19, has significant potential for protecting against the outbreak of pandemics in the future.”