Bharathiar Univ. Researchers come up with own version of anti-viral coating in masks
Face Masks have become a part of the list of essential commodities one would buy today due to the Covid-19 outbreak globally. The availability of surgical masks is getting the demand-rate none imagined. Recently Chinese Billionaire Jack Ma sent 5.4 million face masks along with first batch of coronavirus test kits to African countries for the people to defend themselves from Covid-19 infection.
With these personal protective products being the first line of prevention by people around the world, improvements are being made to the surgical face masks as we speak.
Researchers in University of Alberta, Canada have come up with their own version of making the masks better. Canadian media CTV – News reported that Researcher Dr.Hyo-Jick Choi of Chemical & Materials Engineering at University of Alberta and his team have developed a surgical mask with anti-viral coating that can kill virus when it comes in contact with it.
The secret here is that the masks they developed are treated with salt crystal. The coating, according to Hyo-Jick Choi, would trap the water droplets that carry viruses. When the water evaporates, the salt crystals will come in sharp contact with the viral cell’s membrane and destroy the virus.
US Business Magazine-Fortune reported on Sunday that researchers in Hong Kong Science and Technology Park Corporation on the other hand are looking at how to provide nano-diamonds as the anti-viral coating to surgical masks. The idea here is to make the nano-diamonds get treated to carry electric-charge which will destruct the cell membrane of the virus and kill it when a contact happens.
On Monday (30.3.2020), TOI-Cbe reported that researchers at Bharathiar University have come up with version of mask that comes with natural version of anti-viral coating. What makes the coating distinguish from the above two is that it is made from plants with medicinal and anti-viral properties.
The plants are prescribed by Ministry of AYUSH. The masks that the city University proposes will have active compounds from the medicinal plants infused in the cotton nanofibers of the mask and they will give additional protection along with the external layer to the wearers who could be anyone, given the current pandemic fiasco.
TOI-Cbe mentioned Bharathiar University’s Vice Chancellor Dr.P.Kaliraj had said that they are hoping to take this product to the market within two to three months. He also said that the University is looking for industrial collaboration to produce these masks in bulk.