Anti-Bacterial Materials

As the end of the year is approaching the weather is becoming cooler and in Bangkok it is the rainy season as well. People are falling sick with all kinds of viruses, colds, coughs, flues and stomach bugs. Most of these infectious bugs are transmitted and spread in public spaces.

With people moving around in office buildings, lifts, sky trains, schools, hospitals, there is exposure to infections.  Of course it is hard to minimize exposure but steps are being taken , such as washing hands etc, to deal with that in public space.

There is however a big role designers can play  to help with infections transmission through touching surfaces.

Every designer select  materials that complement the space aesthetically and is functional.  In public places like hospitals, restaurants, schools, and so on selecting materials that have anti bacterial properties will help minimise spread of infections.

Here are a few examples of what can be used in Public spaces.


Corian is a solid surface non porous material, it is resistant to molds and bacteria, and cleaning is easy. It is used normally as kitchen tops, bathroom vanity tops and wall cladding as it can be molded into unique shapes. It is already been used in hospitals. Given its anti bacterial properties and its aesthetic and flexibility  it should  be used in most public spaces.

Anti Bacterial Copper

Bathroom fixtures, door knobs, furniture equipment, in schools, hospitals and other public avenues are prime areas for transmitting diseases. Using anti bacterial copper is a sound choice. It is aesthetically pleasing, durable, and wear resistant, retains details and finish over time and has antibacterial qualities.

Bamboo Fabric

 Bamboo plant  is a strong and fast growing plant. Used in  architecture, in interior design, landscaping and now in fabric. And it has anti-microbial properties as well. According to Japan textile association, a study showed that the bamboo fabric could eliminate introduction bacteria over a 24 hour period. Even after washing the fabric it retains the anti microbial property. If public spaces, such as schools, hospitals, etc., could use bamboo fabric in place of regular fabric for upholstery and other areas then the need to clean regularly would be unnecessary as it resists yeasts, moulds, and fungus  and eliminates bacteria.

Walls & Paints

 “Scientists in South Dakota are reporting development of the first broad-spectrum antimicrobial paint, a material that can simultaneously kill not just other disease-causing bacteria but mold, fungi, and viruses. Designed to both decorate and disinfect homes, businesses, and health-care settings, the paint is the most powerful to date, according to their new study.

And there you go, if we can have this paint applied everywhere it will eliminate a lot of visits to doctors and a lot of distress.

Toilet seats

Antibacterial toilet seats provide a greater level of hygiene than normal seats . The antibacterial properties include proven enhanced anti-bacterial and anti viral properties.  Tests have shown they are  effective against including MRSA, HIV, SARS and E-Coli.

If public spaces were designed with a few of these materials in mind, it would help in lessening transmissions of diseases within public spaces and it would create a cleaner environment for all.

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