Copper vs. Silver, Which Antimicrobial is Best?
Antimicrobials are a useful tool to fight the spread of germs. The NIPC defines antimicrobials as products that "kill or slow the spread of microorganisms. Microorganisms include bacteria, viruses, protozoans, and fungi such as mold and mildew."
Copper and Silver are commonly used to create antimicrobial surfaces, but which one offers the most effective protection against harmful bacteria?
Both metals can kill a broad spectrum of bacteria through ionization. Copper and Silver ions attach themselves to bacteria, disrupting the cell walls and eventually bursting the membranes.
Here's the catch, silver requires a wet environment to release it's bacteria destroying ions. One medical study, evaluating the effectives of Silver and Copper antimicrobials, found Silver's biocidal activity to be measurable at 95°F and at 95% relative humidity. At room temperature and typical indoor humidity (20%), Silver's antimicrobial activity was nearly non-existent. Without moisture, Silver is an ineffective biocide.
Copper, however, is effective at any humidity level and temperature. Even if you level the playing field by comparing Copper and Silver in a humid environment, Copper still takes the advantage. This is due to Copper's two ionic states (Cu+ and Cu++) vs. Silver's one (Ag+). To top it off, Cu++ is superoxide that is extremely toxic to bacteria.
Overall, Copper is the superior biocide making it an excellent material for antimicrobial film.
Common use cases for PowerBx Antimicrobial Film:
- Lobby Tablets & Displays
- Elevator Buttons
- Conference Room Management Tablets & Displays
- Drinking Fountains & Water Coolers
- Door Handles
Interested in purchasing PowerBx Antimicrobial Film?
Request a quote from an Account Executive today at firstname.lastname@example.org