What does light have to do with your holiday flight?

UV Technology and Infrared Heat for your holiday flight

Are you about to leave for your summer vacation anytime soon?

Did you know that you may benefit from specialty light sources on your trip?

  • Infrared radiation and flash lamps help to manufacture plane parts in a better quality
  • UV light keeps drinking water clean
  • Analytical lamps are used at security checks and UV light keeps the air clean
  • Specialty light sources are even used for your T-shirt or your snack on the plane


An infrared heating system is helping to ensure the high quality of composite aerospace structures manufactured at the new GKN Aerospace facility at Western Approach, near Bristol. The system, which is used to provide interim processing of the laid-up composite rear spar assembly of the Airbus 350 XWB to prevent subsequent wrinkling, was custom-designed and developed in close co-operation with GKN Aerospace engineers following initial tests at Heraeus’ Application Centre.GKN Aerospace is a world-leading, global first tier supplier of airframe and engine structures, components and assemblies. The new “Western Approach” site contains a state-of-the-art composites manufacturing operation, including a “moving line” assembly operation that uses automated, guided vehicles to move the wing structures through a series of semi-robotic work stations.

Each of the three rear wing spars for the Airbus A350 XWB is manufactured by laying up pre-preg carbon composite tape on a mandrel and then curing the assembly in an autoclave. However, such complex lay down operations can sometimes produce wrinkling of the final surface because of voids and excess resin between plies or laminates. One proven answer to this is de-bulking, which involves enclosing the composite structure in a vacuum bag at various stages in its manufacture and then squeezing out of air and volatiles between plies under moderate heat and vacuum to insure seating on the mandrel, to prevent wrinkles, and to promote adhesion. GKN Aerospace’s engineers decided that de-bulking could provide significant benefits and asked Heraeus to carry out initial trials using infrared emitters to provide the required heat. These were followed by on-site trials using a portable infrared system and these were so successful that a prototype system was supplied.The prototype system was finally replaced by a scaled-up 465 kW production system which provides precise surface heating.

Please read further, if you would like to learn more about  composites processing with Infrared heat.

 More about humm3 technology on our website.

PID lamps airport

Air pollution such as ozone, nitrogen dioxide, volatile organic compounds (VOCs) and fine particulates - mostly from vehicular emissions - puts a strain on the environment and affects people’s health, which could result in reduced life expectancy. Real-time monitoring of air quality is important to understand the factors that influence air pollution.

In a research project with the University of Cambridge, UK in and around London Heathrow airport a sensor network with 50 stations has been installed measuring the air pollution caused by road and air traffic around Heathrow airport. For this purpose the small battery-powered instruments are lamppost-mounted, which contain a number of sensors that measure six gases, volatile organic compounds (VOCs) and airborne particulates. Heraeus Noblelight supplied PID lamps, which have been used for the detection in these sensors.

And so does air analysis & pollution control with PID lamps work:

Measurement of Volatile Organic Compounds (VOCs) using portable Photoionisation Detectors (PID) enables fast detection at ppb sensitivity. Monitoring VOCs using PID is becoming an economical way to track pollution and air quality in urban environments. Heraeus PID lamps are the industry-leaders for lifetime and spectral purity for cost-effective, reproducible analysis.

Photoionisation is the term for the absorption of high energy photons by a molecule which results in ionisation of that molecule. The current created by ionisation is proportional to the concentration of the molecule, so this provides a simple method for quantitative analysis of a variety of compounds. The technique is non-destructive so can be used in conjunction with other detectors for extending the analysis. Photons will only ionise molecules with an ionisation potential less than the photon energy.

Heraeus produces a wide range of  PID lamps for standard and customer-specific requirements both so RF and as DC versions. For portable detectors HF versions are the best choice because they are smaller and require less energy, while DC devices are preferred for laboratory instruments.

UV air disinfection

Airborne microorganisms such as viruses, bacteria, yeasts and mildew are especially present in heavily frequented areas such as airports, medical practices and the industry. They jeopardise the health of persons, contaminate raw materials and cause food to perish.UV radiation reliably reduces the germ load and improves hygiene and storage conditions. To reduce the germ count in the long term, the germ-infested air can be disinfected already in the supply air ducts.In particular short-wave UV radiation has a strong bactericidal effect. It is absorbed by the microorganisms' DNA and destroys its structure. This inactivates the living cells.

Please read further, if you would like to learn more about  air disinfection .

Airport security

Demand for hazardous materials monitoring is ever increasing: from the growing awareness of the dangers from chemicals used in common industrial processes, to the increasing threat of terrorism at our airports, borders and critical infrastructure. One set of materials – Volatile Organic Compounds (VOCs) – can be detected with very high sensitivity using Photoionisation Detection (PID). Photoionisation is the term for the absorption of high energy photons by a molecule which results in ionisation of that molecule. The current created by ionisation is proportional to the concentration of the molecule, so this provides a simple method for quantitative analysis of a variety of compounds. Explosives Trace Detectors (ETD) now use Photoionisation Detector lamps, which have traditionally been employed in general gas chromatography, trace gas monitoring and sample ionization for mass spectrometry.

The need for monitoring VOCs is driving demand for Heraeus’ PID lamps. Customers benefit from our design expertise, as the Heraeus technical team works with OEMs to design and build custom products to satisfy specific dimensional and performance requirements. Automated manufacture of PID lamps – once considered a dream in the distant future – is now a reality! Heraeus Noblelight is the first PID lamp manufacturer to offer automated production. Longer lifetime, higher quality and better lamp-to-lamp consistency.

Please read further, if you would like to learn more about the advantages of using Heraeus  PID lamps.


An infrared, cheese grilling and browning oven from Heraeus Noblelight has helped Food Point of Dubai to solve an inflight house-keeping problem as airlines try to meet the passenger demand for pizza slice snacks. By pre-grilling and browning prepared slices in Food Point’s food production facility, the packaged slices can now be baked on board the aircraft in the minimum of time without burning the bread base. A light crisp texture is achieved in only 15 minutes of the dedicated aircraft ovens, with the cheese topping already having a baked, brown appearance prior to cooking.

Food Point is 90% owned by Emirate Airlines Group. At its factory in Dubai, which is currently the only food production facility of its kind between Europe and the Far East, it produces meals to be served on all Emirates Airline flights as well supplying other commercial carriers and non-airline customers. The facility is designed with meticulous attention to health and safety, while maintaining the highest standards in food hygiene.

Pizza slices have become increasingly popular over recent years as an in-flight snack during the ultra-long haul routes to the US and Australasia. Without being pre-baked, the cooking time for the 120 gram pizzas would result in either undercooked cheese, or a burnt bread base. To solve the problem, Food Point contacted Heraeus and the Neston company sent an infrared test unit out to Dubai for trials. These were so successful, both in melting the cheese satisfactorily and in providing the browning to improve the overall pizza appeal, that a full-scale oven was ordered and retrofitted at the facility.

“The infrared oven has helped to ensure the high quality of our food products, right up to point of use,” commented. Steve Carlyon, senior operations manager at Food Point. “And its introduction into our production line, from preproduction tests to final installation and commissioning has been easy and seamless. As a Halal certified producer, FoodPoint product is in demand throughout the Middle East and enquiries for client bespoke solutions such as pizzas are on the increase. We required a quick turnaround and Heraeus turned out to be the perfect partner.”

Please read further, if you would like to learn more about infrared heat for  food processing .


Printed electronics and printed functionalities are on the rise, in the form of RFID (radio frequency identification), as part of telephone or credit cards (smart cards), as copy protection or as security features in ID cards. To produce printed electronics, organic or metal-containing inks are applied on plastic foils, paper or glass. Drying, curing and sintering are methods required to achieve the desired conductivity or semi-conducting or dielectric properties. UV lamps or LEDs and flash lamps with intelligent control units are used for this. Depending on the application, the optimal emitter is chosen, so that the wavelengths suit perfectly to the ink and the substrate.

Please read further, if you would like to have  more information .


Carbon infrared emitters optimize the drying of prints on T-shirts and other textiles in dryers by Calmatch BV, The Netherlands. Compared to the previously used halogen emitters, they use energy much more efficiently and only need half the time. Calmatech BV is a worldwide known manufacturer of flash cure dryers and tunnel dryers for textiles. The dryers can be used on different carousels as well as on mobile stands.

The heart of the dryers are medium wave carbon infrared emitters from Heraeus, which replaced conventional halogen emitters. The carbon emitters are so cleverly arranged in the dryer that a very even heat distribution on the textile surface is achieved. The medium wavelength is optimally suited for drying on the surface.

In contrast, the short-wave halogen emitters used previously emitted much energy through the paint and the textile. For example, drying every screen ink with the halogen emitters took seven to eight seconds, while carbon emitters now only need two to three seconds. In addition, the system is no longer unnecessarily heated with. Carbon infrared emitters respond in seconds and are therefore suitable for pulsing; they only have to be switched on when they are needed. In contrast, the halogen emitters had to be kept constantly on standby and thus consumed power permanently.

Jurgen van Oostrum, Managing Director at Calmatech BV, is convinced: "The switch to carbon infrared emitters has made our textile flash cure much more efficient. Our customers particularly appreciate the power savings due to the low drying times and the textile-friendly heating. This not only dries the surface more gently and without textile discoloration, but also the print pallet is not overheated."

Please read further, if you would like to learn more about  carbon infrared emitter.