Nanofiber masks almost 100% effective in stopping COVID-19 infections, new study reveals
Since scientists confirmed that COVID-19 was not going away anytime soon, companies promising protection against it have flourished, giving rise to numerous protective measures. Among these measures, the most recommended is the face mask. Now, various observations and data have revealed that among the different types of masks available, nanofiber masks have been found to be the most effective.
Nanofiber face masks are made of fibers with a diameter of the order of one nanometer (one nm = 0.000000001 m). According to a report in Infection Control Today, Collaborative observations shared by the University of California and George Washington University found that face masks with filters containing fibers in the nanometer range offered much better protection than the other types available.
Almost 100% effective nanofiber masks
According to sources, scientists’ research has been carried out on different varieties of face masks, including cotton and surgical. The data, which were subsequently published in the journal Letters in environmental sciences and technologies, found that the nanofiber masks prevented 99.9% of the coronavirus aerosols used for the test. The protection has been attributed to the ultra-fine nanofiber filters that were made using the process known as electrospinning, sources reported. Electrospinning involves sending a high voltage through a drop of liquid polyvinylidene fluoride, after which wires measuring 300nm are spun to create a filter.
Experts were convinced that masks made using this method successfully captured almost 100% of the polyvinylidene fluoride mixed with an aerosol containing the coronavirus. While the average containment capacity of conventional masks stopped at 45%, data showed surgical masks contained 98% of the virus, followed by cotton masks at 73%. In addition, nanofiber masks have been found to have better reproducibility in terms of filter efficiency, due to their improved filtration performance and higher uniform pore size distribution.
Yun Shen, a contributor to the study, said that the design and manufacture of face masks and air filters can be improved using electrospinning. In addition, it has been reported that high performance infiltration, economic feasibility and scalability make this method very productive and promising.