De Castelli's Experiments on the Antibacterial Properties of Copper

Natural, passive, antimicrobial material, with a surface that ‘self-sterilises’

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05/05/2020 - De Castelli has always designed projects using solid copper, favouring it from among the range of metals at its disposal to transform into decor and architectural projects that have a strong visual impact: desks for hotels, counters for bars and restaurants, high quality accessories for the home and community settings, and surfaces for coverings.

Since antiquity, copper has been famed for its antibacterial properties: in China it was called qi, which means health, in Ancient Egypt ankh, a symbol of eternal life; in India for thousands of years people have drunk from copper vessels; and to this day in the United States copper tubing is used to carry drinking water.

Now many scientific studies are demonstrating that copper kills bacteria, and De Castelli has set up an experiment to develop working methods that ensure this property is preserved.

A number of authoritative research groups around the world have found that Coronavirus survives on copper for about 4 hours, unlike other metals or materials, where it can remain contagious for much longer; it even seems that viruses actually 'explode' when they land on copper, as it tends to 'degrade' them.
Already in the 80s a study had confirmed how effective copper was at fighting bacteria. And this was further demonstrated in 2015 against a precursor of Covid-19, the Coronavirus 229E.

So in addition to being natural, copper is also a passive, antimicrobial material, with a surface that ‘self-sterilises’, requiring neither electricity nor chemical cleaners.

In the near future it could thus return to the fore as a major player in healthcare construction works and also in public spaces and our homes (it was the first, and so far the only, antimicrobial metal surface approved by the EPA - the US environmental protection agency). It could come to represent not only an important ally to fight future pandemics, but as an ideal material for using in community areas that we frequent every day or indeed in our homes which we share with our most cherished and beautiful possessions that may also become safer as well as affording health benefits.

Building upon this news from the scientific community, De Castelli is embarking upon an innovative project in collaboration with university researchers, to swiftly develop a production method capable of eliminating the need for any surface treatment on copper (thus far used to maintain its chromatic effects), by experimenting with different oxidation processes and phases with the aim of preserving its antibacterial properties as much as possible.

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