27 August 2008 may prove to be a pivotal point in mankind’s war against the much-feared bird flu pandemic. On that day, Sharp Corporation unveiled its latest technological weapon against the unseen enemy! Incorporated in its ionic air purifier, the Plasmacluster Ion Technology (more on this in a later post) has just been scientifically proven to be 99.9% effective in destroying the bird flu virus known as H5N1.

Every now and then, the press reminds us that bird flu is the prime suspect to cause mankind’s next pandemic. Pandemic sounds terrifying. It is. That’s when a deadly virus turns totally global, in a very negative sense. It boggles my mind that the 1918 Spanish Flu may have killed 50 million people on earth! World Health Organization (WHO) confirmed on 5 October 2005 that the 1918 Spanish flu was caused by H1N1, a bird flu virus.


Not quite, not yet anyway. Updated on 10 Sep 2008, WHO statistics shows the death toll at 245 from 1996 when the H5N1 virus was first identified in China. So what’s the fuss? The greatest nightmare for scientists monitoring the bird flu virus is to see it attain human-to-human transmission capability. There has been only one probable case of human-to-human transmission recorded in Thailand in September 2004. If indeed the much-feared virus mutation takes place, you can expect pandemonium on a global scale.

Countries around the globe are conscientiously preparing for the worse (more on this in a later post). As protectors of our families and loved ones, we should start doing some homework too.

Ok, so what’s all this got to do with Sharp’s ionic air purifier. Is it not just another ionic air purifier? Yes, because it takes care of the usual pollutants (dust, dirt, smoke, dander, pollen, cuisine odors, pet odors, allergens etc) that contaminate the air that we breathe and live in. If there is really a tested defence shield against a deadly virus, why not? And that is precisely what Sharp is telling us; get the whole package with their Plasmacluster Ion Technology.

Obviously, for the value-conscious, the next logical question would be “yes, that makes a whole lot of sense but at what cost”? At no extra cost, Sharp claims! Sharp contends that it is cheaper than any other ordinary ionic air purifier when measured over 5 years. Wow, value for money sure gets my attention! But, how is this possible in this nothing-is-for-free world?

With the Plasmacluster Ionic Air Purifier Model FP-N40CX as the basis, Sharp contends that it is great value for money as there is no filter replacement costs for the first 5 years. At first sight, the typical competitor’s upfront cost of US$160 looks cheap compared to Sharp’s US$399. But add in the annual replacement filter replacement costs of US$100 and the total outlay for the competing ionic air purifier comes to US$560.

Feedback on relevant data on Sharp or its competitors will be very much appreciated. Feel free to drop me a note if you have actual numbers.

My next move would be to seriously investigate the Sharp Plasmacluster Ion Technology. Now is the time to research, while bird flu is still not quite at pandemic proportions.

Its never too soon to get ready. Personal panic does not fade. It was like a horror movie that ran for months. Paranoia abounded in crowded places even as people commuted to work on buses and MRT trains. Taxis cruised empty as stories were told of the infected travelling in them to hospital. It was near pandemonium in many Asian cities as pandemic fears took hold. The year was 2003. SARS was a much dreaded acronym. The SARS (severe acute respiratory syndrome) virus started spreading in Asia and infected 8,096 people around the world, resulting in 774 fatalities. As always, being prepared is half the battle won.

Watch this space as we track exciting developments in our pursuit of safe, pure and clean air with nothing more than an ionic air purifier.

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