New Tech to Test Efficacy of Different Face Mask

Oct, 2021 - By SMI

New Tech to Test Efficacy of Different Face Mask

The researchers designed a simple and cheap system to test how effectively various face mask materials blocked the respiratory droplets.

Almost every individual across the world is now wearing a face mask to curb the spread of the novel coronavirus (COVID-19). According to previous studies, around 50% of individuals who are diagnosed with the virus may show no symptoms of the disease. Wearing face masks should be adopted by every individual during the global pandemic to curb the spread of the novel coronavirus. However, with the COVID-19 pandemic, new questions have been raised over the efficacy of the face masks. Now, the research team from Duke University has developed a new technique to test the effectiveness of different face mask designs and fabrics in reducing the spread of respiratory droplets.

However, scientists around the world are debating whether the novel coronavirus can spread through the air. Moreover, the WHO has also stated that the novel coronavirus may spread through small drops ejected from an infected person's mouth and nose. The researchers from across the globe outlined evidence that shows floating virus particles can infect individuals who breathe them in. Moreover, a face mask is a part of protective measures, including good hand hygiene and social distancing. However, it is still unclear how much effect the face-covering has.

Now, the researchers have designed a simple and inexpensive system to test how effectively various face mask materials blocked the respiratory drops during normal speech. During this research, the team trialed several face masks and their alternatives such as neck fleece, bandanas, or scarfs. The researchers found that the N95 face mask showed the most effective fall in droplet emissions, followed by a surgical mask. Moreover, the team found that the majority of homemade cotton masks showed strong results, similar to what was seen in surgical mask tests. However, not every type of face mask was effective at reducing droplet emissions. The research was published in the Science Advances journal.

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