“Existing humidifiers can be unhygienic. They allow bacteria in the tank to be transmitted directly into the room. By questioning, testing and often trying the seemingly illogical, we could create technology that solves this problem – and engineer a better product.”
James Dyson, Engineer
Breathing new life into humidifiers. By killing bacteria.
To make our humidifier hygienic, we tested every possible way of killing bacteria in water – from silver ions to antimicrobial plastic. Ultraviolet light was by far the most effective method. This led us to develop our own technology, channelling every drop of water in the tank along a specially-designed cold cathode UV-C bulb.
To continue our journey, we would need top-flight materials.
The problem with ultraviolet light is that it can crack or disintegrate product components. So we built a test rig to accelerate degradation in different materials. Eventually, we chose Polyetherimide – a military grade plastic, often used for jet engine components.
Leaking tanks. No laughing matter.
To ensure our tanks were also strong and secure, we developed a high-powered laser to weld the two sides together. Then to make sure there were no tiny holes where water could escape, we tested for leakage using helium – chosen because of its small molecular size. We still use the same test method on every single tank.
Five years of testing the water. And the airflow.
Over the course of five years, we created more than 70 test methods – from bacteria removal to airflow projection. We even tested the machines in the varying levels of humidity that they’ll be subjected to around the world, from dry summers in Australia to humid downtown Manhattan.
Greater lengths. But not always distances.
Coincidentally, the tap water at our UK base in Malmesbury is some of the hardest that can be found in the world. These adverse calcium conditions meant that our machines had to perform under the most difficult conditions possible.
Years in development
New test methods