February 11th marks National Inventors Day and at Ti-DOX we know something about a good invention! To celebrate, we interviewed Ti-DOX Vice President Reinhard Schuetz, P. Eng. to find out how he came to create the HydroxylizAire technology. It turns out the seeds of it started over 20 years ago in the petroleum industry.
Working as a pipeline engineer, one of Reinhard’s clients was having issues with underground storage tanks that were very costly to fix. So he went to work researching solutions and (as he puts it) 1,000 McDonalds serviettes later – he had designed a heated dual containment tank. Then, the client wanted to reduce toxic venting so Reinhard designed a condenser to sit on top of the tank and gather toxic vapours.
“I couldn’t believe how good the testing results were,” says Reinhard. He initially tested benzene vapour, a highly carcinogenic product. Additional test confirmed it was also effective on more residential chemicals like formaldehyde and ammonia. Reinhard got patents for the tank and condenser, but his inventor’s mind was still turning.
“I just started researching,” Reinhard says. In his research he came across UVC lights, which can destroy germs but not chemicals. He then figured out a way to generate hydroxyl radicals (which can destroy chemicals) and the HydroxylizAire technology was born. It’s the effective combination of destroying both germs and chemicals at the same time that makes the HydroxylizAire unique and superior compared to other air purifiers on the market.
So what advice does Reinhard have for aspiring inventors out there? First, recognize the problem and your opportunity to solve it. Then, do your research and decide if you want to proceed. Finally, be persistent. If you believe in your product, don’t give up just because of someone else’s different opinion.
“It’s always been in my mind to make things a little bit better if I can,” says Reinhard. “I knew I really had something to pursue with the Ti-DOX technology.”