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Filtration performances of non-medical materials as candidates for manufacturing facemasks and respirators.
Int J Hyg Environ Health. 2020 08; 229:113582.IJ

Abstract

The recent outbreak of the coronavirus disease (COVID-19) is causing a shortage of personal protective equipment (PPE) in different countries around the world. Because the coronavirus can transmit through droplets and aerosols, facemasks and N95 respirators that require complex certification, are urgently needed. Given the situation, the U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) recommends that "in settings where facemasks are not available, healthcare personnel might use homemade masks (e.g., bandana, scarf) for the care of patients with COVID-19 as a last resort." Although aerosols and droplets can be removed through the fibers of fabrics through a series of filtration mechanisms, their filtration performances have not been evaluated in detail. Moreover, there are a series of non-medical materials available on the market, such as household air filters, coffee filters, and different types of fabrics, which may be useful when facemasks and respirators are not available. In this study, we comprehensively evaluated the overall and size-dependent filtration performances of non-medical materials. The experiments were conducted under different face velocities to study its influence on size-dependent filtration performances. The flow resistance across these filter materials is measured as an indicator of the breathability of the materials. The results illustrate that multiple layers of household air filters are able to achieve similar filtration efficiencies compared to the N95 material without causing a significant increase in flow resistance. Considering that these air filters may shed micrometer fibers during the cutting and folding processes, it is recommended that these filters should be inserted in multiple layers of fabrics when manufacturing facemasks or respirators.

Authors+Show Affiliations

Department of Civil, Architectural and Environmental Engineering, Missouri University of Science and Technology, Rolla, MO, 65401, USA.Department of Civil, Architectural and Environmental Engineering, Missouri University of Science and Technology, Rolla, MO, 65401, USA.Department of Civil, Architectural and Environmental Engineering, Missouri University of Science and Technology, Rolla, MO, 65401, USA.Center for Atmospheric Particle Studies, Carnegie Mellon University, Pittsburgh, PA, 1521, USA.Department of Civil, Architectural and Environmental Engineering, Missouri University of Science and Technology, Rolla, MO, 65401, USA.Department of Civil, Architectural and Environmental Engineering, Missouri University of Science and Technology, Rolla, MO, 65401, USA.Department of Civil, Architectural and Environmental Engineering, Missouri University of Science and Technology, Rolla, MO, 65401, USA. Electronic address: yangwang@mst.edu.

Pub Type(s)

Journal Article
Research Support, Non-U.S. Gov't

Language

eng

PubMed ID

32917368

Citation

Hao, Weixing, et al. "Filtration Performances of Non-medical Materials as Candidates for Manufacturing Facemasks and Respirators." International Journal of Hygiene and Environmental Health, vol. 229, 2020, p. 113582.
Hao W, Parasch A, Williams S, et al. Filtration performances of non-medical materials as candidates for manufacturing facemasks and respirators. Int J Hyg Environ Health. 2020;229:113582.
Hao, W., Parasch, A., Williams, S., Li, J., Ma, H., Burken, J., & Wang, Y. (2020). Filtration performances of non-medical materials as candidates for manufacturing facemasks and respirators. International Journal of Hygiene and Environmental Health, 229, 113582. https://doi.org/10.1016/j.ijheh.2020.113582
Hao W, et al. Filtration Performances of Non-medical Materials as Candidates for Manufacturing Facemasks and Respirators. Int J Hyg Environ Health. 2020;229:113582. PubMed PMID: 32917368.
* Article titles in AMA citation format should be in sentence-case
TY - JOUR T1 - Filtration performances of non-medical materials as candidates for manufacturing facemasks and respirators. AU - Hao,Weixing, AU - Parasch,Andrew, AU - Williams,Stephen, AU - Li,Jiayu, AU - Ma,Hongyan, AU - Burken,Joel, AU - Wang,Yang, Y1 - 2020/07/21/ PY - 2020/04/10/received PY - 2020/06/15/revised PY - 2020/06/15/accepted PY - 2020/9/12/entrez PY - 2020/9/13/pubmed PY - 2020/9/25/medline KW - Aerosols KW - Filter materials KW - Filtration efficiency KW - Homemade facemasks KW - Household air filter KW - Respirators SP - 113582 EP - 113582 JF - International journal of hygiene and environmental health JO - Int J Hyg Environ Health VL - 229 N2 - The recent outbreak of the coronavirus disease (COVID-19) is causing a shortage of personal protective equipment (PPE) in different countries around the world. Because the coronavirus can transmit through droplets and aerosols, facemasks and N95 respirators that require complex certification, are urgently needed. Given the situation, the U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) recommends that "in settings where facemasks are not available, healthcare personnel might use homemade masks (e.g., bandana, scarf) for the care of patients with COVID-19 as a last resort." Although aerosols and droplets can be removed through the fibers of fabrics through a series of filtration mechanisms, their filtration performances have not been evaluated in detail. Moreover, there are a series of non-medical materials available on the market, such as household air filters, coffee filters, and different types of fabrics, which may be useful when facemasks and respirators are not available. In this study, we comprehensively evaluated the overall and size-dependent filtration performances of non-medical materials. The experiments were conducted under different face velocities to study its influence on size-dependent filtration performances. The flow resistance across these filter materials is measured as an indicator of the breathability of the materials. The results illustrate that multiple layers of household air filters are able to achieve similar filtration efficiencies compared to the N95 material without causing a significant increase in flow resistance. Considering that these air filters may shed micrometer fibers during the cutting and folding processes, it is recommended that these filters should be inserted in multiple layers of fabrics when manufacturing facemasks or respirators. SN - 1618-131X UR - https://www.unboundmedicine.com/medline/citation/32917368/Filtration_performances_of_non_medical_materials_as_candidates_for_manufacturing_facemasks_and_respirators_ L2 - https://linkinghub.elsevier.com/retrieve/pii/S1438-4639(20)30528-9 DB - PRIME DP - Unbound Medicine ER -