IIT-Guwahati Develops Coating For Cloth Masks For Better Covid Protection
A team of researchers of Indian Institute of Technology Guwahati (IITG) has developed a coating to modify ordinary cloth or silk masks for better protection against aerosol-driven infections like...
Indian Institute of Technology Guwahati researchers have developed a ‘Nanometer Thick Superhydrophobic Coating’ material that will ensure better protection against COVID-19. This coating will modify the ordinary cloth or silk masks and provide protection against aerosol-driven infections like coronavirus along with providing a non-suffocating experience.
N 95 masks or double masking is mandatory for protection against virus as per the World Health Organisation (WHO)'s guidelines. People often complain about suffocation after wearing these masks for a very long time and are not economically feasible for every section of society.
To address these challenges and to bring in a safer, economical and comfortable alternative the researchers of IIT Guwahati have developed a coating material to modify the easily-available cloth mask into a hydrophobic mask to repel virus-laden droplets and avoid breathing difficulties even when worn for a longer period of time. Another advantage is that these masks are versatile and can be used with other additives such as antibacterial nanomaterial for additional protection against viruses, said IIT Guwahati in its statement.
Highlighting the unique aspects of this Research, Prof. Arun Chattopadhyay, Department of Chemistry and Centre for nanotechnology, IIT Guwahati, said, “A cloth mask is largely porous to aerosol and thus cannot effectively prevent COVID-19 type infection. Although they are still better than wearing no mask, an improved version that would prevent the entry or exit of the aerosol from the modified cloth mask was needed. We have worked on that based on the principle of repulsion of the aerosol by the modified cloth while allowing the air to flow through the mask. A simple coating of the hydrophobic molecule on the silk cloth worked well here.”