Virolens and Instant Covid Tests London – Your Questions Answered.

In the weeks following on from our successful launch, we’ve been busy speaking to lots of different people, from a wide array of industries, about Instant Covid Tests London and Virolens. It’s been great to see how excited people are about 20 second Covid testing and its ability to get society moving again. There are so many potential applications for the Virolens technology, beyond enabling employees to return to their workplace, and we are currently exploring lots of fascinating opportunities.

Whilst having these conversations, we’ve found some questions are regularly being asked. So we’ve picked out some of the more common ones and answered them below.

Why Haven’t I heard About Virolens Before?  

Virolens is designed and manufactured in the UK by iAbra and TT Electronics. The machine has been in development for over a year and was recently registered with the MHRA. The nature of the technology being used is complex, ground breaking and completely unique in the world of Covid testing. As such, it took time to develop to the exacting standards required. This extra care and attention has assured that Virolens is not only the quickest Covid test on the market, it also has sensitivity and specificity comparable to a PCR test, which is considered the gold standard in the UK.

 How Does Virolens Work?
  1. The Virolens system uses an oral saliva swab, which is placed inside a cartridge and inserted into the system.
  2. The cap of the cartridge holds the swab.  It can be pressed down and rotated which transfers a thin film of the saliva sample onto the slide from the swab. 
  3. The cap is then lifted to raise the swab from the slide, so the slide can be extracted from the cartridge by the Virolens device.
  4. Once extracted, different wavelengths of light are projected through the slide.  The Virolens system captures holographic images of the sample. 
  5. While smaller than the wavelength of light, a virus particle will still interact with the projected light scattering small amounts.  This creates identifiable diffraction patterns.  The diffraction pattern from a COVID virus is unique in size, shape and colours and is large enough to be seen in the holographic image.
  6. The holographic image data is analysed using artificial intelligence (AI) software to identify the unique pattern of the virus from other structures.
  7. The Virolens system is completely self-contained and can give a yes/no/invalid sample result in about 20 seconds.
Is Virolens for real?

The answer to this one is very simple…YES. It’s easy to be skeptical when faced with a technology that seems almost too good to be true. We understand the skepticism but we already have Virolens installed at our first screening centre in the City of London, with the capacity to test 800 individuals an hour. It is very much real and providing quick and accurate Covid test results.

Although this technology is completely new to the world of Covid testing, the AI image recognition software already existed. Holographic microscopy has been around for a long time but until recently has lacked the computing and image sensor power to make it a viable proposition. Virolens has harnessed many of the concepts of holographic microscopy with a very powerful AI solution to deliver the answer to the problem of identifying something as small as a virus in 20 seconds.

How did Virolens get approved for use?

In order for Virolens to be registered with the MHRA, testing had to be undertaken in real-world point of care trials. The data used for approval came from over 800 samples taken in the UK and UAE. The collective data for these trials resulted in the following accuracy results:

Sensitivity           98.1%

Specificity            99.7%

PPV                        96.4%      

NPV                       99.9%    

Can I have Instant Covid Tests London onsite at my workplace?

ICTL is able to provide an onsite solution to businesses or facilities that require regular testing for large volumes of people. We will be making more information about this service available later this week, but if you would like more information in the meantime please contact