Company celebrates coronavirus test results as demand for its specialist anti-microbial coatings soar

Managing director Peter Llewellyn-Stamp and Peerless personnel wearing visors with protective coatings Picture: STEVE WRIGHT

Managing director Peter Llewellyn-Stamp and Peerless personnel wearing visors with protective coatings Picture: STEVE WRIGHT - Credit: Archant

A protective coatings manufacturer is set to expand after being “very encouraged” by tests which showed its effectiveness against coronavirus.

A shop counter with plastic protection Picture: PEERLESS PLASTICS & COATINGS

A shop counter with plastic protection Picture: PEERLESS PLASTICS & COATINGS - Credit: Archant

The team at Peerless Plastics and Coatings in Thetford has already been boosted by heightened demand for its products as a result of the pandemic, but managing director Peter Llewellyn‑Stamp is now gearing up for further expansion.

“We have grown our team from 35 to over 40 people and will need to take on more people in the coming months as we expand operating hours to meet demand,” he said.

MORE – Firm celebrates initial testing success for coatings productThe company makes hard coatings for plastics to help them last longer and provide protection against various germs. Its specialist MicroGuard Anti-Fog coating range – which can be used on a number of items including visors and screens – has now been tested against NL63 Human Coronavirus and proven 99% effective, he said.

“We are very encouraged by these test results and will continue to develop new hard coating solutions to meet on-going demands,” he added.

A woman wearing a mask Picture: PEERLESS PLASTICS & COATINGS

A woman wearing a mask Picture: PEERLESS PLASTICS & COATINGS - Credit: Archant

“The MicroGuard coating range can add value to many applications and will enable us to now offer coatings to companies across Europe and beyond, looking for long term anti-microbial or anti-viral protection on face coverings and surfaces such as desks, doors, screens, handles, car interiors and any other area where there is a high traffic of people.”

There was a “growing interest” in the products as people realised they needed to put in place longer-lasting solutions or products which met users’ demands, he said.

“Two examples would be Anti-Fog on the inside of medical visors so that they don’t mist up during the course of the day and sneeze screens which have been installed into retailers, supermarkets and restaurants which would benefit greatly from scratch and chemical resistance to meet the day-to-day wear and tear.”

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The MicroGuardTM coating range was developed and launched by Peerless in 2015 after tests showed it was 99.99% effective, against bacteria such as MRSA and e-coli.

After the coronavirus outbreak, the company immediately had it tested against FCoV (Feline Coronavirus) as the nearest test available at that time.

After inital tests showed it reduced FCoV, it carried out more work to improve its effectiveness, with a view to offering anti-fog coatings for items such as visors and goggles.

The MicroGuard Anti-Fog and the MicroGuard Clear Hard Coating was submitted for testing against the NL63 (Human Coronavirus) using the ISO21702:2019 test method.

Results on the MicroGuardTM Clear Hard Coating are still awaited but MicroGuard Anti-Fog results are in and the coating has proved to be 99% effective against NL63 (Human Coronavirus) meaning that it offers anti-viral performance, said Peerless.

Interest in Anti-Fog coatings have risen as manufacturers of personal protective equipment (PPE) seek to improve the performance of their products and offer wearers of essential face coverings – such as NHS and other key workers – better gear.