Full steam ahead


From the iron to the washing machine and dryer: the last generation of Panasonic products adopts the “steam” technology to improve energy and functional performances. Target, to cut costs and times for washing and ironing.

Marika Comotti

The water steam at high temperature (about 100 centigrade degrees) is commonly used to execute the most common operations of cleaning and sanitizing of fabrics, materials and surfaces, starting from the domestic environment, reducing or eliminating the use of noxious chemical detergents for the environment. Jet-sprayed inside a washing machine or a dryer in phase of washing with water or of drying, it can also contribute in reducing energy costs (and the time) determined by the successive ironing. The use of water steam as specific additional programme of white goods is one of the latest frontiers in the eco-sustainability matter and contributes in cleaning fabrics in-depth, eliminating impurities and allergens and reducing the formation of folds or wrinkles, or it simply permits to refresh clean, or slightly dirty, garments, or it constitutes a completion of the drying phase with the machine by decreasing the water consumption. It is Panasonic that seizes the opportunity for the Italian market, proposing the “Steam Action” technology installed on two models of washing machines and on a heat-pump dryer, belonging to its product range.

The “Steam Action” technology integrates the technology of irons into state-of-the-art household appliances and exploits the steam action to make ironing even easier and more perfect, compacting working times and energy costs. Together with an approach to the product according to the design criteria of “Silent Arch Design”, and with the presence of an inverter motor, it shares in improving the comfort while drastically reducing noise and vibrations.

Starting from the plate
The “Steam Action” steam technology is applied to NA-140VZ4 and NA-140VS4 washing machines, and to the NH-P80S1 dryer with heat pump. The base principle is extremely simple, both in the case of the washing machine and of the dryer: the steam is introduced into washing and drying programmes and actively contributes in granting an efficient result of cleaning and good preservation of fabrics in time. To obtain the steam, this type of technology uses a hot aluminium plate as main component: in contact with the heated surface, the water turns into steam and then it is jet-driven inside the drum where it adds its sanitizing and in-depth cleaning power to the water action. Thanks to very fine particles able to penetrate in-depth into the fabric fibres, the steam recovers the original state of clothes without forming difficult folds to iron.

Not only water
The steam use in the washing phase, to refresh garments and dry/dry-cleaned fabrics, or in the drying phase to mitigate or to eliminate particularly difficult wrinkles, allows lightening the successive ironing work, thus reducing the work times for the daily care of clothes. Both Panasonic household appliances are equipped with a range of steam programmes targeted to drastically reduce the need of ironing, also in case of clothing usually crumpled after a wash such as cotton shirts. In the washing machine case, in particular, the use of the only steam in the ambit of washing programmes allows refreshing garments without necessarily running a full washing cycle or using chemical detergents. The high-pressure steam removes the odour particles from fibres (smoke included), bringing them to the surface and definitively eliminating them in a cycle lasting 25 minutes.

Fighting allergens
The steam action has a strong anti-allergenic potential to assure the safe deep cleaning of clothing also in case of allergy suffering, due for instance to dust mites and pollens. The steam use through a dedicated programme (like “Allergy Care” of the NA 140VS4 Panasonic model), at high pressure and temperature, can then remove even 99.99 percent of the allergens contained in clothes.

Lending a hand to saving
Technologies such as the “Steam Action” by Panasonic indirectly contribute in enhancing the reduction of costs charged to the fulfilment of daily actions of care of clothing and fabrics in domestic environment, thus minimizing the consumption of energy and water and then the environmental impact, also thanks to some eco-characteristics of products.

The NA-140VS4 steam washing machine is provided with 10 kg loading capacity; 3D sensor and Inverter motor identify the load entity and adapt motion and speed of the Sazanami Drum in order to avoid useless wastes of water and energy. The “HydroActive+” function generates water jets from more directions, assuring the maximum possible efficiency to the washing cycle, while the “Eco” option permits the 50% reduction of energy and the 30% decrease of water in comparison with a traditional washing cycle.

The NH-P80S1 dryer has an 8 kg drum and is based on heat pump technology, which allows high-performance operations at lower temperatures than standard products.

Consumer, appliances and components, solutions
Panasonic Corporation, one hundred years of history in 2018, ranks among the primary international productive realities in the development and implementation of electronic products for the three main market sectors: consumer, appliances and components, solutions. The company, which is headquartered in Osaka, Japan, in the fiscal year ended on March 31st 2012, recorded consolidated net sales exceeding 76 billions Euros. The Group shares are listed on the Stock Exchanges of Tokyo, Osaka, Nagoya and New York (NYSE:PC).