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UW Spinoff Pacific Air Filtration to Bring Highly Efficient New Technology to Market

Written by CoMotion Staff / September 21, 2017
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UW CoMotion Announces Notice of Allowance for Transformative Air Filtration Patent

Spinoff Pacific Air Filtration to Bring Highly Efficient New Technology to Market

SEATTLE August 3, 2016 – CoMotion at the University of Washington today announced that a transformative patent exclusively licensed to Pacific Air Filtration has been issued a notice of allowance by the United States Patent and Trademark Office (USPTO). This milestone comes on the heels of the startup’s recent public launch, and news that the company has raised $1.25 million in seed funding.

“This notice of allowance is of major significance to the company’s future, as the claims allowed are very broad,” said Dr. Igor Krichtafovitch, CTO of Pacific Air. “It will give Pacific Air Filtration the ability to bring to market its own unique air filtration products, and to start working with potential licensees.”

Poor indoor air quality is a serious health risk globally, especially in urban areas. Working with researchers at UW, Dr. Krichtafovitch came up with an idea for a filtration system that combines the environmental benefits of electrostatic filters with the ease-of-use of traditional mechanical filters. Traditional mechanical air filters use a mesh screen to filter particles from the air. Electrostatic filters use metal plates and electrical charges instead. While they are much more energy efficient due to the lack of air flow resistance caused by a mesh screen, the metal plates can get dirty quickly. They need to be cleaned often, and the cleaning process is labor- intensive.

To solve this problem, Pacific Air has developed a unique air filtration system: an electrostatic filter that substitutes metal plate collectors with an inexpensive open-cell foam cartridge that is easy to replace. In addition to its ease of use, tests have shown the PAF system delivers superior filtration of a wide variety of contamination types, including so-called Asian or industrial dust, ultra-fine particles (UFPs), pathogens and pollen, among others, over the life of the filter to clean air.

With the key claims for this technology now allowed, Pacific Air plans to start manufacturing standalone room units that will offer superior performance and unmatched energy efficiency. The company is also looking to partner with licensees who would be able to produce larger units for HVAC systems in office and other commercial buildings. Pacific Air anticipates bringing its first product to market early next year.

“The allowance of these claims represents a key milestone for our company,” said Larry Rothenberg, President of Pacific Air. “As its exclusive licensee, we are working as quickly as possible to get products into the marketplace that leverage this breakthrough technology.”

About Pacific Air Filtration

Pacific Air Filtration (PAF) sets a new standard for air filtration through technology that combines the performance of mechanical filters with the energy efficiency of true electrostatic filters. The breakthrough solution delivers high performance air purification with 80% lower energy use than traditional mechanical filters. PAF owns exclusive rights to the technology, originally developed by Dr. Igor Krichtafovitch in partnership with the CoMotion collaborative innovation hub at the University of Washington.

About the University of Washington and CoMotion

Recently ranked by Reuters as the #1 most innovative public university in the world, UW is a leading recipient of federal funding research, producing innovations that have the power to change the world—from biofuel alternatives, to more effective treatments for Alzheimer’s disease and brain cancer, to purification technology for drinking water in the developing world. CoMotion at the UW is the collaborative innovation hub to expand the societal impact of the UW community by developing and connecting local and global innovation ecosystems. We deliver the tools and connections UW researchers and students need to accelerate the impact of their innovations.

Donna O’Neill
Marketing and Communications CoMotion at University of Washington p: 206.685.9972
f: 206.543.0586