The ZEISS UVClean is a powerful, yet simple UV disinfection tool for eyecare professionals. The uncomplicated one-button process initiates a cycle of UV light to effectively disinfect up to 6-10 pairs of eyeglasses in just 40 seconds. This innovative device uses no liquids or chemicals and produces no waste due to its use of 4 germicidal UVC bulbs that bathe each frame in powerful UV light.
The ZEISS UVClean kills up to 99.5% of common viruses and bacteria on the surface of eyeglasses*, making it fast and safe for eyewear retailers to keep their customers protected.
The recent pandemic has caused nearly every industry to evaluate their practices and make changes to better protect their employees and customers. Sometimes a small change is all it takes, while others have required more innovation to efficiently keep people healthy. The new awareness of easily transmissible germs and viruses has exposed challenges in the eyewear industry of serving numerous customers each day along with the plethora of frames and lenses being touched during visits. New standard practices require every single pair of frames to be set aside for extended periods of time until an employee becomes available to thoroughly disinfect them. This means a large amount of frame inventory is unavailable after each visit and productivity is consumed by manual cleaning of each frame – both validating the need for a fast and safe cleaning method to keep those frames available for the next customer.
Having previously collaborated on projects, Trig and Voxelight LLC worked together to develop the ZEISS UVClean. With Voxelight being experts on UV light from their Sunscreenr product, and already having a relationship with ZEISS, it made sense to partner on the ZEISS UVClean to transition it from concept to manufactured product. Trig assisted with design & development tasks such as concept illustrations, prototype CAD, Design for Manufacture and product rendering. As a leader in the Optical Industry, and attentive to the recent need for efficient disinfecting, ZEISS identified the possibility to improve this new reality for Eye Care Professionals and was on board from the beginning working with Voxelight on the development of the ZEISS UVClean.
As one can imagine, the need for rapid UV disinfecting is at a high point right now. The Pandemic has caused numerous changes, and the need to keep people safe is at the forefront. This project was on a fast track to get prototypes developed, issues resolved, and products manufactured. Trig and Voxelight worked closely with almost daily check-ins to resolve the challenges that arise with such quick development. Trig provided early concept design illustrations to get a sense of form, function and size before we started into prototype development. Once a design form was selected to fit with current ZEISS products, we were able to focus on the details of creating necessary volume requirements, arranging internal electronics and separation of product body components.
Our partnership with Voxelight helped the process move quickly, due to their expertise and knowledge regarding UV light. They were able to focus on component sourcing and UV lamp requirements for sufficient disinfecting, which was necessary to pass independent testing for safety and efficacy. This freed up Trig to focus on the CAD development of the device enclosure to quickly produce 7 full scale prototypes for testing. After procuring the internal components and 3D printed parts for the full scale prototypes Trig met on site with Voxelight to observe and support with assembly. Valuable lessons learned during this process helped us to simplify assembly, more efficiently arrange internal components and re-design the enclosure for future servicing. In just weeks, we were on our way to producing another generation of CAD to be used for manufacturing.
While the ZEISS UVClean is simple to use, its development wasn't void of complexity. The final design is a combination of numerous manufacturing processes and materials. The enclosure is injection molded plastic, while the internal structure is composed of steel sheet metal, CNC machined parts, laser cut steel and high reflectivity aluminum sheet metal reflectors to ensure every section of eyewear is disinfected simultaneously. This required to the evaluation of numerous interaction points between different materials. Choosing the right attachments, interlocking features, and fasteners was crucial to forming a robust and compact product. Yet, once this is all assembled together, it takes only a single button to initiate and run a cleaning cycle. Integrated side-emitting fiber optic lighting around the lid indicates all necessary information: power on, cleaning in process, and cycle completed as well as indicating any issues that may arise including end of bulb life.
One of the larger challenges to solve was the function of the lid. The device is composed of a main body and an upper lid, which is connected through hinges at the back. With a lid length of 20in and a need to open fully in order to load 6-10 pairs of eyeglasses, we spent a large amount of design time at the hinge location. Function of the hinge was determined to require strength, over 100 degrees of motion, and slow-close function for safety. Multiple rounds of testing sourced hinges resulted in a suitable product, which we then designed around to discreetly route the necessary wiring from the body to the lid. The goal through this complex process was to create a visually and functionally simple product to be used efficiently by eyecare professionals. While there is a lot happening on the inside, it only takes one push to quickly get a clean set of frames for a new customer to try on.
The ZEISS UVClean is designed for health and safety through and through. As we've seen, there is a current need for effective disinfection as well as a growing awareness of how small changes can help keep people safe in the years to come. The ZEISS UVClean is a tool for eyecare professionals that drastically improves their ability to serve people in a safe way for years to come. It efficiently eliminates the need for employees to risk their own health by cleaning dozens of, possibly contaminated, eyeglasses everyday quickly in between customers. After each visit, it is extremely easy to lift the ZEISS UVClean lid and load 6-10pairs of eyeglasses and accommodating all sizes from kids to oversized frames. With the cycle-start button intentionally placed on top of the lid, it becomes impossible to accidentally initiate a cycle of powerful UVC light. With the ability to disinfect 6-10 pairs of eyeglasses in just 40 seconds, the ZEISS UVClean becomes a critical device helping Eye Care Professionals to continue business as usual while confidently keeping their staff and customers safe.
* Independent laboratory tests show effectiveness of 99.995% against adeno virus, 99.68% against influenza viruses, 99.47% against Escherichia coli, and 99.74% against staphylococcus aureus.
// The UVClean was recently awarded a 2021 Honoree CES Innovation Award in the Health & Wellness category. Learn more about this award and CES here.