Problem:Hand sanitizer supply is critical for reducing the spread of coronavirus but we are massively short on supply. Hourly hand sanitizer usage would reduce disease spread by 70% reduction (Extrapolating MIT Simulation Study). In 2019, the industry made about 200,000 tons per year of sanitizer. We really need that amount for a day. The lower amounts mean efficient rationing coordinated with quarantines while supply is scaled as rapidly as possible.
Solution:Sanitizer is the logistically optimal and most practical solution to cleaning hands. Hourly cleaning presents a logistical problem of lining up at sinks or having gallons of water and soap. The next best alternative to sanitizer could be surgical gloves. But hospital studies show that compliance with personal hand sanitizer is double what it is with cleaning stations and sinks. The slight friction of going to a bathroom or a station and lining up drops compliance and the transmission reduction benefit goes away. Thus distilleries and governments are needed to rapidly act on the supply chain.
Scale Analysis of Supply Needed for Hourly Hand Sanitizing GloballyIn 2019, Hand Sanitizer was only a $1 billion per year business. World production is about 200,000 tons per year. We need 200,000 tons per day. Stockpiles went to individual hoarding and usage. Each week, we can make 5,000-15,000 tons based upon existing actions. This is enough for 15 million people using it once an hour.
Each ton is about 10000 people per week using hourly hand cleaning. We could stretch this as it is convenient for them to wash hands 3-5 times per day after they go to the bathroom. When rationing, think about which facility needs the least transmission. How many people are in the facility? Divide by 10000. Give a 100ml bottle or two 50 ml bottles per week to each person.
Converting distillery production, scaling the production and provide to the most critical areas. National and world distillery capacity is not sufficient so we will have to target where we can put it and scale up pure alcohol production. Alcohol is the key ingredient for sanitizer. Rapid mobilization will be needed to rapidly scale.
We will ultimately need hand cleaning every hour for 80% of the world population for about 6 billion people to fully open the world economy. Here is an analysis of the scale of global mobilized sanitizer as we move to re-openingEach person following the hourly cleaning:20 milliliters per day per person.600 milliliters per month per person. But with waste and inefficiency, that is 1 liter per person.Ultimately 6 million tons of sanitizer per month or 72 million tons per year.
Focus initial supplies on the critical areas that cannot be shutdown. Hospitals, police, fire departments, military, prisons other key operations. Use it in the hardest-hit areas first.
Optimal hand cleaning is similar to a physical vaccine in disease spread reduction. Like a liquid condom for the hands. Gloves have similar function but non-contaminating usage is less practical but better than nothing. Hand washing works but washing as frequently as is needed means lines and distributing personal supply is gallons of water and some soap. Each ton of sanitizer is good for 10000 people per week. Even putting all production at critical places means we need 5-10 times more than what we have.
Recommended PlanCommunicate the need for hourly cleaning to reduce disease spreadRamp up hand sanitizer productionRamp up supply chain by 10X and then 100X and then 400X. Critical part of supply is distilleriesHave a rationing strategy and managing the front lines of disease spread. Put limited supply to best use.
NOTE on Brian WangBrian Wang has been part of a startup for a few weeks that has been working on a more convenient personal dispensing system which would help mitigate disease spread. But the nature of the crisis and the clear identification of the sanitizer supply issue has required a pivot to get international action on the sanitizer and alcohol shortages. It also means getting the pivot to use all distillery capacity for sanitizer. Discussions have started with some people in Italy, Gulf States, and early connections to Latin America. The Singularity University network is getting activated.
AskHelp connect me with distilleries and with mayors and governors to discuss action to ramp up supplies and getting them to the right spots. The right spots being the places that cannot or should not close with quarantines. Hospitals, crisis response areas (police, military), ambulances, prisons, etc…
Brian Wang is a prolific business-oriented writer of emerging and disruptive technologies. He is known for insightful articles that combine business and technical analysis that catches the attention of the general public and is also useful for those in the industries. He is the sole author and writer of, the top online science blog. He is also involved in angel investing and raising funds for breakthrough technology startup companies.
He gave the recent keynote presentation at Monte Jade event with a talk entitled the Future for You.  He gave an annual update on molecular nanotechnology at Singularity University on nanotechnology, gave a TEDX talk on energy, and advises USC ASTE 527 (advanced space projects program). He has been interviewed for radio, professional organizations. podcasts and corporate events. He was recently interviewed by the radio program Steel on Steel on satellites and high altitude balloons that will track all movement in many parts of the USA.
He fundraises for various high impact technology companies and has worked in computer technology, insurance, healthcare and with corporate finance.
He has substantial familiarity with a broad range of breakthrough technologies like age reversal and antiaging, quantum computers, artificial intelligence, ocean tech,  agtech, nuclear fission, advanced nuclear fission, space propulsion, satellites, imaging, molecular nanotechnology, biotechnology, medicine, blockchain, crypto and many other areas.