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Thread: PHI Cells

  1. #1
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    PHI Cells

    I recently began experimenting with a UV light appliance from RGF Environmental Group, called a Photo Hydro Ionization Cell. A PHI Cell distances itself from the typical UV light appliance in this way. UV light needs to shine on a surface for extended periods of time in order to kill the target contamination. The reason for this is that UV light loses much of its energy within close proximity of its source. PHI cells on the other hand have a UV light source which still has the same long term effect, but to RGF this is secondary. The primary use of UV light in a PHI cell is to activate what is called a Quad-metallic compound which is the coating on a grid that surrounds the UV bulb. When this occurs, the ductwork and the entire conditioned space that it feeds are flooded with hydro-peroxides, ozonide ions, super oxide ions, and hydroxide ions. This Advanced Oxidation Process kills or sterilizes contaminants on contact at which point the oxidizers themselves revert to harmless hydrogen and oxygen atoms.

    I am totally sold on this product. I've attached before and after photos of a condensate pan that was "cleaned" by this product in just a few weeks. This product has also been shown to kill, Staph, Strep, Bird Flu, mold etc. I wanted to upload the test results but the file is too large. I'll see if I can get it out another way.
    Attached Images Attached Images   

  2. #2
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    I'm getting the popcorn ready

  3. #3
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    Does it also do a Barium Sweep of the conditioned space? How many Flux Capacitors does it need to run? I wonder if it will sterilize my lungs too. Imagine, no antibiotics needed ever again! They should use it in airplanes, that way runaway lawyers with multi-drug resistant TB won't contaminate others. Nevermind if it kills the patients too

  4. #4
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    ar4s1
    There are a number of threads on this forum on the PHI cell and it's sister the RCI. Please read these before making additional posts. We have been down these roads before. The bottom line is the product is a questionable use of the PCO technology with some serious negatives (ozone production for one). It is over-marketed (hyped) and the claims of effectiveness are difficult to substantiate.

    rur2d2?

  5. #5
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    Terribly sorry if I broke some type of unwritten protocol there BE. I can say however that as both a military and civilian HVAC technician I have seen, and smelled the results of the PHI Cell. I use one myself, all of my customers are pleased with the results of their overly hyped product and I recently installed a PHI Cell in my parents house after replacing fuel oil tanks that had leaked. I have little doubt that when I return, that odor if not completely gone will be substantially reduced. Think what you like, be skeptical if you must. I have personally experienced in many situations and applications positive results from this product and will continue to endorse it. The photos that I posted SHOW what a PHI Cell is capable of doing.

    Incidentally, I joined this forum to share information with my professional peers, not to be talked down to.

  6. #6
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    ar
    Touche. I apologize if it sounded like I was talking down to you. It is just that we have gone down this road with this product several times before. I would still suggest that you read some of the other threads on these products. There is a lot of good information - pro and con.

    I welcome your personal experience regarding this product and hold more value in that than the marketing hype put out by the company. My objection to your post had to do with the repeat of the marketing claims that we have heard many times before. We can read their literature and website to obtain this information. I have serious doubts about the effectiveness of this product on bird flu, SARS, the common cold, mold, etc.. Every time I have looked into the basis for these claims I have found holes in the substantiation for them. It is this type of exagerated marketing that gives a bad name to all indoor air quality products.

  7. #7
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    "and will continue to endorse it"

    That is why you are dangerous to yourself and your clients. Breathing ozone (and related or more powerful oxidizers) is bad and can be deadly to some. Hawking with fervor ozone generators to be used where people breathe the ozone should be a felony, because it is criminal. Upset at being talked down to? The way I see it, you have more important things to worry about, like the health of your parents.

  8. #8
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    Quote Originally Posted by ar4s1 View Post
    Incidentally, I joined this forum to share information with my professional peers, not to be talked down to.

    Ar2D2........You sound sincere and seem to have only posted your "opinion" for the benefit of others. I AM CERTAIN YOU HAVE THE CREDENTIALS TO SHOW YOU AND THIS "STUDY" ARE LEGITIMATE. AND DEFINITELY NOT TO BENEFIT YOU OR "SOMEONE" ELSE THAT MAY PROFIT FROM THIS POST.

    That would never happen here, or would it?

  9. #9
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    Quote Originally Posted by breathe easy View Post
    ar
    Touche. I apologize if it sounded like I was talking down to you. It is just that we have gone down this road with this product several times before. I would still suggest that you read some of the other threads on these products. There is a lot of good information - pro and con.

    I welcome your personal experience regarding this product and hold more value in that than the marketing hype put out by the company. My objection to your post had to do with the repeat of the marketing claims that we have heard many times before. We can read their literature and website to obtain this information. I have serious doubts about the effectiveness of this product on bird flu, SARS, the common cold, mold, etc.. Every time I have looked into the basis for these claims I have found holes in the substantiation for them. It is this type of exagerated marketing that gives a bad name to all indoor air quality products.
    Thank you for that BE. That apology speaks volumes as to your character. I have gone back and reread many of the previous threads. One thing that I can say about this forum is that the number of threads posted daily is staggering. Valid points are buried deeply and in a hurry. I will make a point to better research before posting any future threads.

    That being said, I understand that all IAQ products are difficult to market. Most are quite expensive and make some hard to believe claims. I've handed out literature on PHI Cells to countless potential customers so I've seen that difficulty first hand. However when that one customer takes the chance and is thrilled with the decision that they've made, it makes all the leg work worth the effort. And hopefully they will tell two friends, and they'll tell two friends, and so on and so on. Times are changing in our industry, IAQ is becoming a bigger deal as new homes are being built more air tight to conserve energy. The point is, find a product that you feel that you can stand behind as I have and introduce it to your potential customers. Word of mouth is and always has been the most powerful and successful marketing tool.

    To all you young up and comers, and veteran techs as well, find your personal niche' and run with it.

  10. #10
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    ar4s1, you seem more rational than your first post suggested... You hit a sensitive nerve, which is why genesis must be on his second bag of popcorn by now. In that case, I'd like to hear why you feel that you can stand behind that product, as you say, but from a safety perspective. Herbicides, for example, can be very specific and therefore relatively safe by targeting only a particular metabolic pathway only present in some plants. Antibiotics are safe because they target metabolic pathways present only in bacteria. Oxidizers, though, attack anything organic including people... Why do you think your product is safe?

  11. #11
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    pmeunier I am a major fan of photocatalysis and the technology when used correctly. There is just enough TIO2 on the honeycomb of the RCI to call it a catalyst.
    As far as the coil cleaning picture goes that is accomplished with the 254 nm band width on the UV bulb they bare using. The ozone from the bulb comes from its band with exceeds the 254 nm band width and approaches the x-ray band width near the 154nm band width and can be very dangerous to direct eye site and skin contact. Even more so than the standard UVGI light. All testing that I have read on the stuff including the Kansas report all has to do with surface contact. Bio aerosols can stay suspended for up to two hours in a space just from some ones sneezing.
    There is several universities researching what they are doing, and no field testing being done, all in lab controlled situations. But most of them are being funded by the manufacture for the research monies. No third party testing has been shown on actual air quality in a building during its use. The RCI may have some merits , I just don't see where it can be applied in the ASHRAE 62.1 Standards. Look at my Avatar that is a 24x24 in duct in 2000 cfm of air. That is a functioning catalyst rack I installed in a chemical plant to rid the office of VOCs from the manufacturing floor.

  12. #12
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    thanks genesis... that's an interesting picture. I hadn't thought of the special situation you described. I guess that if a product is chosen and installed to minimize ozone and incomplete oxidation byproducts like formaldehyde, that's a lot better than high levels of VOCs. I don't think that's what the RGF product does, though, from the description it floods the living space with oxidants.

  13. #13
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    ar
    I agree with your assessment that IAQ is an important part of the future of the HVAC industry. I do not agree that one can find a product - any product - and recommend this in all situations. There simply are not any panaceas in this business. Far bigger gains in IAQ can be obtained by proper source control, remediation, humidity control, introduction of sufficient fresh air, sealing of the duct system and building envelope, proper filtration, etc. You have to look at IAQ as a system - not as a product.

    It is difficult to market IAQ products. But it is not the price that is the problem. Customers will pay for the right product in the right application. In fact, price often becomes the last consideration (within reason).

    My problem is that so much of the marketing literature is inaccurate and over-hyped. While the RGF literature is a particulary bad piece, it is not the only violator. In fact, I would say most marketers get carried away in their marketing claims.

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