Mitsui Chemicals, Inc. and its 100% subsidiary, Mitsui Chemicals Industrial Products Ltd. announced that Mitsui Chemicals’ high performance antibacterial/anti-odor copper coating film, Copper StopperTM, which is distributed and serviced by Mitsui Chemicals Industrial Products, was selected by Ace Co., Ltd. for use in the interior fabric (copper jacquard) of their world-standard luggage line, ProtecA.
“Copper StopperTM”, developed with Mitsui Chemicals proprietary technology, is a new material coated by vapor deposition nano-coating technology in the thickness of 10 to 100 nanometers. Use of alloy technology resolves the problem of corrosion to which copper is prone.
Copper, an essential nutrient to humans, is known to be highly effective as an antibacterial agent in inhibiting the spread of infections such as A -type influenza virus and MRSA (methicillin -resistant Staphylococcus aureus). It is also known to inhibit growth of fungi such as Trichophyton. Copper’s anti-allergen performance against cedar pollen and mite allergens has also been noted in recent years.
In March 2008, the United States Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) approved registration of antimicrobial copper and copper alloys, the first and only solid materials to receive this type of EPA registration. As a result, antimicrobial copper alloys have received global attention and are being adopted in hospitals, health and welfare establishments, nurseries, and other facilities requiring hygienic environmental conditions.
Ace Co., Ltd. collaborated with world-class designer, Oki Sato of Nendo to refurbish their key luggage brand, ProtecA, by reinforcing its high quality and high functionality with next-generation, high design.
In line with their concept for ProtecA GENIO CENTURY, Mitsui Chemicals Industrial Products introduced traditional Japanese techniques used in making gold and silver threads for the copper alloy threads used in the luggage line’s innovative and next-generation interior fabric “copper jacquard”.
“Copper StopperTM” has wide applications and new uses are being actively pursued. Currently, the material is being used at Kitasato University Hospital to prevent infections at the blood testing facility of their internal medicine wing. Evaluations to measure efficacy in prevention of infectious diseases are underway at a number of medical facilities and expected to receive high marks.
Other uses such as filters, masks, touch panel films, socks, shoes, and supporters are also being developed and tested. The Mitsui Chemicals Group will continue to pursue expansion of applications for “Copper StopperTM” as a solution provider to one of the world’s major social issues, preventing healthcare-associated infection risks to improve quality of life.