Restroom cleanliness continues to draw attention in the war against infection control and cross-contamination. Despite cleaning efforts, restrooms continue to be a breading ground for bacteria and germs. But, a recent invention might make things a bit easier.

According to reports from Good magazine, Sum Ming (“Simon”) Wong, 17, and Kin Pong ("Michael") Li, 18, both students at Hong Kong's Church of Christ in China Tam Lee Lai Fun Memorial Secondary School, have developed an ultra-hygenic door handle that can kill germs commonly found in a restroom.

To do so, the inventors have created a door handle that is coated with titanium dioxide. The mineral has been found to be effective at killing germs, especially when exposed to the ultra-violet spectrum of natural light.

The only challenge is that restroom doors, especially inward facing ones, don’t typically see much sunlight. To ensure their handle would have a steady supply of titanium dioxide-activating UV light, the pair came up with a workaround — rather than illuminate the handle from an external source, they’d light it from within. The door handle is, in essence, a glass cylinder with a UV-emitting LED at one end, which illuminates the entire handle, and hits the titanium dioxide with enough light to reportedly kill 99.8 percent of bacteria that comes in contact with its surface.

To power this light, the duo built a small gearbox with captures the energy generated each time the door opens and closes, transforming that into the electricity used to light the LED.

To read more about the invention, click here.
To see the handle in action, click here.