Coronavirus: WHO advises to wear masks in public areas, reversing policy New evidence shows masks can help stop the spread of the virus, the World Health Organization says.
New hydrophobic membrane could hold key to combating global mask shortage
While shortages of protective equipment against Covid-19 are still common worldwide, researchers have created a hydrophobic membrane that makes the surgical grade N95 mask, used globally in hospitals, reusable and more effective.
Populations have been advised that the masks mitigate the risks of Covid-19, as the virus is believed to be transmitted via respiratory droplets. But the production has not been able to keep up with demand, especially when it comes to N95 masks, believed to be the most effective.
Researchers from King Abdullah University of Science and Technology and the University of California reported in the monthly science journal ACS Nano that the membrane works where the masks do not because the typical N95 masks can only filter about 85 percent of particles smaller than 300nm.
The hydrophobic membrane cleans itself as droplets slide off of its surface and back into the air. This prevents the mask's pores from getting clogged up by viruses and other particles, adding to the new technique’s efficacy.