Latest from the Lab


Collaboration with Waterloo Institute for Nanotechnology (WIN)

SiO2 Innovation Labs Inc. has teamed up with the Waterloo Institute for Nanotechnology (WIN) within the University of Waterloo to validate Universal PROTECT-AM efficacy against SARS CoV-2 (Covid-19).


New research aims to create a surface coating that will kill COVID-19 on contact

TUESDAY, JULY 14, 2020
New research is underway to develop a coating that will kill the COVID-19 virus immediately upon contact with any surface. The antiviral coating could be applied to all personal protective equipment and high-touch surfaces, greatly reducing the risk of community transmission of the virus.

The Waterloo Institute for Nanotechnology (WIN) within the University of Waterloo, is working in collaboration with SiO2 Innovation Labs on the research.

“The COVID-19 virus can survive on surfaces for 24 hours or more,” said Sushanta Mitra, Professor of Mechanical and Mechatronics Engineering and lead researcher on the project. “In order to protect frontline workers and the general public, it’s important that the virus be neutralized immediately when it comes into contact with any surface; our work will culminate in the production of an anti-viral coating that will do just that.”

Mitra’s team has developed an innovative experimental set-up to quantify the adhesion force between the viral load and the coated surface. Mitra is using water droplets to mimic the primary mode of transmission of COVID-19 between humans – droplets of saliva or other bodily fluids. Further testing will determine the coatings' ability to de-activate SARS-CoV-2 that causes COVID-19 illness in our populations.

The process for creating the coating is multi-step, involving the development of techniques to durably coat the anti-viral material of different surfaces, understanding the origin of the physical forces between the virus and the coated materials through careful experiments and the development of a computational model and finally the creation of an optimal formulation of the coating materials based on these studies.

“Our history of creating and delivering safe, sustainable and environmentally friendly products is enabling us to meet this historical moment,” said Bruce Johnston, CTO at SiO2 Innovation Labs. “We’re thrilled to be collaborating with Professor Mitra and WIN in order to bring to market a surface coating that can neutralize pathogens quickly and their subsequent spread. Reduced infection rates will save lives and create safer environments in public and private spaces including homes, the workplace, schools, stores, public transit and hospitality venues”.

This research is multi-faceted and is being conducted by many different researchers at Waterloo including Boxin Zhao, Professor in Chemical Engineering and John Honek, Professor in Chemistry.

The Waterloo Institute for Nanotechnology (WIN) is Canada’s largest nanotechnology institute committed to UN Sustainable Development Goals and a global leader in discovering and developing smart and functional materials, connected devices, next-generation energy systems and, therapeutics and theranostics.

SiO2 Innovation Labs creates innovative, safe and efficient ultra-thin high-performance commercial and industrial coatings that are manufactured in North America.

This research is supported by both the Natural Sciences and Engineering Research Council of Canada and Mitacs.

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Media Contact:

Rebecca Elming

For more information:

SiO2 International Inc.
Bruce Johnston
mobile: 416 707-7171

Improving Glass

Glass is both a unique and commonplace material. Its versatility as a compound is demonstrated by its uses across many industries, including automotive production, aviation, architectural glass, renewable energy (solar panels), construction, electronics, and many more. North American markets are experiencing significant growth while the Chinese markets continued to see increased profits in 2018. It follows that glass coatings represent a major opportunity to further optimize technologies where glass is utilized.

The glass industry faces several production challenges which ultimately affect the quality of its products. For example, glass can be scratched during manufacturing, transportation, handling, and installation; it can be a difficult material to keep clean over time without compromising utility; production machinery typically requires significant maintenance; and application of a protective coating requires multiple steps costing vendors time and money. Furthermore, glass manufacturing processes traditionally involve toxic materials which harm human health and the environment. The resulting product acts as a pollutant over time.

The current standard coating solutions, which are meant to solve these problems, do not sufficiently ensure product quality nor minimize environmental impact. Plastic films applied to glass are costly, difficult to apply, and are easily scratched. Other application processes are highly sensitive and require the use of safety equipment to protect against toxic elements and their high cost is due to their multi-step application techniques.

SiO2 International offers a superior alternative.

Our innovative SiO2 ultra thin coatings are applied to glass surfaces using a single, non-toxic step. These coatings are VOC free, food and skin safe, and environmentally friendly. In contrast with current industry standards, our products are long-lasting and durable, resistant to hydrolysis, frost, vapour cleaners, and oxidation while being easy to clean. Additionally, they resist ultraviolet rays, acid alkaline substances and the caustic nature of diesel and jet fuel while they protect against physical forces such as pressure washing and naturally occurring abrasion.

SiO2 International is at the forefront of glass coating technology. Learn more about our coatings at

Self Cleaning Characteristics

Water Removes a Potentially Sticky Material.

Once concrete is treated with our SiO2 Technology, the surface becomes Self Cleaning. On an untreated concrete surface, the concrete powder would become sticky and adhere to the surface making it extremely difficult to remove. Our treatment allows water to act as a cleaning agent removing soiling elements and keeping the surface clean.

Easy to apply, SiO2 ultra thin coatings self-cleaning properties can protect against soiling elements, acids and environmental decay. Its self cleaning attribute will reduce maintenance costs and will safeguard precious surfaces from sunlight exposure.

Learn more about the natural attributes found in many of our SiO2 coatings.


Keeping Buildings and Businesses Cleaner with SiO2 Coatings

SiO2 Ultra Thin Coatings – Advanced Surface Protection. Office buildings, airports, hotels, condominiums, banks, hospitals, medical/dental facilities, schools/colleges, retail stores, warehouses, stadiums, gyms, the list is long. Virtually all commercial and public buildings depend on regular maintenance services for both their customers and employees.

Traffic Conditions of a Building

When traffic is introduced, dust, dirt, clay, grit and sand moves around which can abrade a floor surface. The erosive results are compounded when liquid binders, such as petroleum, grease, oil, animal fat and water, are introduced.

Hot Spots within a Building

Hot spots are specific areas of condensed traffic. Examples of these areas are focal points where traffic follows a natural path to a destination causing abrading and staining in that specific area. Hallways, checkouts in grocery and retail stores are considered hot spots. Lobbies and entrance ways, elevators, revolving doors and ticket counters are common areas where hot spots will occur.

Safe and easy to apply, SiO2 Products are water, abrasion and stain resistant (see Our Coatings for natural attributes found in many of our coatings). SiO2 Ultra Thin Coatings safeguard the value of an asset by extending its life and reducing maintenance and cleaning costs. SiO2 International’s easy clean products offer an alternative to conventional protective coatings, are more effective and free of chemical, resins, adhesives or toxic substances. In most instances, surfaces need only be cleaned with water to maintain a clean, chemical free environment.

SiO2 Technology’s inherent characteristics include the ability to control problem microbes safely with a sustainable, VOC free, molecular quartz glass coating. Our treatments will lessen the need for chemical cleaners while offering an extra level of protection never before available in the North American market.

Other examples of maintenance surface usage:

  • washroom facilities
  • stainless steel work & food prep tables
  • rubber, stainless & polymer conveyors systems
  • refrigeration seal gaskets
  • shopping carts
  • flooring in public & food prep areas
  • ovens, heat tables & mixing vats
  • exhaust systems
  • hospital emergency units
  • airports
  • stadiums
  • coffee shops