In 1967, Japanese scientists Akira Fujishima and Kenichi Honda (University of Tokyo) discovered the active cleansing effect of titanium dioxide in photocatalysis (the acceleration of a photoreaction in the presence of a catalyst).
They researched this phenomenon, now known as the “Honda-Fujishima Effect”, and published their findings in 1972. Little changed in this research until the 1990s when engineers at TOTO collaborating with the University of Tokyo discovered the additional passive cleansing effect of photocatalysis.
The additional passive cleansing effect is based on the hydrophilic properties of titanium dioxide. Surfaces treated with titanium dioxide dramatically reduce the surface tension of falling water. Instead of rolling off the surface as individual drops, the water flows off the edges in an ultra-thin film, which removes all dust and dirt particles in the process.
You may be wondering why all this Science matters. In indoor applications (think bathrooms), this technology prevents the spreading of germs and bacteria and eliminates bad odors deriving from their action.
TOTO was the first company to use active cleansing technology. TOTO durably bakes HYDROTECT, a unique protective coating for ceramic building materials that renders surfaces self-cleaning; into their products.
Because HYDROTECT is fired on to the surface separately from the glaze, it will not wash or wear off over time. It is not visible and, thus, does not alter the color of the product.
It’s reassuring to know every TOTO innovation has a single motivation: helping people feel cleaner and more alive.
Being a technology leader has been good for TOTO. It’s no wonder this past November they reached an astounding total of 40 million WASHLETs sold world-wide since 1980.
I look forward to visiting TOTO at Design and Construction Week in Las Vegas next month while I’m on BlogTour KBIS to see their new Connect+ System and eWater+.
TOTO’s innovative Connect+ System neatly conceals the Washlet’s power cord and water supply hose for a clean installation.
TOTO’s eWater+ mists the bowl with electrolysed water after every flush and once every eight hours during non-use. A pre-misting of plain water further enhances bowl cleanliness by sealing the surface against the adherence of matter approximately 80% better than dry porcelain.
(TOTO is a sponsor for BlogTour KBIS 2016, but the views and opinions expressed on this blog are mine, and I will be honest in what I share. You, the reader, are my top priority and it is my goal to make sure you can trust the content and integrity of this blog.)