Adenosine triphosphate (ATP) is a nucleoside triphosphate used in cells as a coenzyme, often called the "molecular unit of currency" of intracellular energy transfer. (source: http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Adenosine_triphosphate)
Since ATP is found in all living cells, an ATP sampling device is an effective means of sampling a surface for mold and microbial contamination. The greater the ATP level, the higher the mold or microbial contamination level. The good news is that while the definition of ATP sounds very scientific, the process of ATP sampling is relatively simple when you understand how it works and follow these basic steps.
ATP Sampling Swab - The swab is coated with a special detergent designed to easily lift ATP from the sample surface.
Bioluminescent reagent - A small amount of this fluid is stored in the bulb at the top of the sampling swab. When the swab tip is bathed in this reagent, it creates light. The amount of light that it creates is in direct correlation to the amount of ATP that is collected in the sample.
ATP Meter - The ATP meter is an illuminometer that measures that amount of light that is created through the reaction of the ATP and the reagent. It will produce a reading of relative light units (RLU). The higher the RLU, the greater the amount of ATP, and the greater the amount of microbial contamination or mold.
The manufacturer offers two general threshold levels based the type of surface being tested. First for easy to clean surfaces such as stainless steel, table tops, and non-porous materials. Second for difficult to clean surfaces such as objects with groves or crevices and porous materials.
Caution: >10 - <29
A study was undertaken by Michael Pinto of Wonder Makers Environmental to determine if the Esporta Wash System was capable of removing bacterial contamination from sewage-contaminated soft goods and laundry. Samples of the goods were analyzed by an independent laboratory to determine concentrations of Escherichia coli (E. coli), Enterococci, and total coliform bacteria. The percentage reduction of bacterial organisms was calculated for each of the items tested.
The same samples that were sent to the independent laboratory were also tested using an ATP sampling system. The study concluded that the Esporta Wash System is effective at removing bacterial contamination from sewage affected goods and that an ATP sampling system is an effective means of field verification of decontamination.
When you use ATP sampling as part of your standard cleaning and restoration protocol, you are provided with quantitative evidence on the state of contamination or cleanliness. As a result, all restoration cleaners and contractors should be using this valuable tool.
For more information, contact Neil Grant at 1.800.881.7781 ext. 116 or email.
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