Foldscopic view of surgical mask 3 ply

Pre-Introduction / COVID pandemic
It’s time to question everything we do and change our systems.
As we witnessed the need in this pandemic, how much people should have been more systematic and have been working in large scale groups. Moreover, the importance of enabling local communities to lead their ecosystem development because as many as large entities are out there, they cannot fulfil the demand in such cases. So the only way to have a better future for the world is by working together, sharing and care.

A great example of this is happening now. Direct to the end of this post.

Good to start this topic is by a call for open-end movement to support all local communities around the world in Science and empowering all each other to foster more of public occupying science as major and spread the spirit of science for societies.

Jumping to the topic, I did a quick experiment for surgical face mask. I tried to come up with good photo/video production. Hope you find it useful and maybe give you a new look for it.

1- Name / Type of the make: Surgical Disposable Face Mask
This one is widely used between people and even by the frontlines in places where they do not have the N95 mask. It is effective to catch the bacteria shed in liquid droplets and aerosols from the wearer’s mouth and nose. They are not designed to protect the wearer from inhaling airborne bacteria or virus particles and are less effective than respirators, such as N95.

Closer view to the sides using Foldscope’s LED Magnifier.

A full video review of complete Mask via LED Magnifier

2- Structure:
The Mask is made of 3 Layer polymer material called melt-blown polymer.
White-Inner- layer: Moisture absorption.
Middle-Filter- Layer: Barrier to germs and made of water-repellent material which means do not absorb water.
Colour-outer- layer: Fluid repellent

#1/ Picture of layers / 1.5X Zoom / Phone camera

#2 / Picture of layers / 10X Zoom / LED Magnifier

#3/ Picture of layers / 140X Zoom / Foldscope Lens

  • Full mask with 3 ply-layers / 0.3-0.5 micron filtration efficiency
Foldscopic video of mask 3 ply / 0.3-0.5 micron filtration efficiency

Layers view / Sample prepared by Foldscope’s 1mm cover slide +
glass slide

  • White layer – Inner Side – Fibers much denser than color side and it’s number between each pore is 35-40 fibers making a mix of network for filtrating the droplets. Functions as moisture absorption
  • Middle Layer or Filter / Doesn’t have pores and works barrier to germs and made of water-repellent material which means do not absorb water.
  • Coloured layer – Outer Side: more space between fibers and less number which is around 20. It’s a fluid repellent which means do not absorb water.

Video record of experiment viewing the mask layers


Comparison between Surgical mask and 3M -N95- efficiency

There is an open Source Face Mask Challenge which people are developing new prototypes of masks you can check the online shared doc here >
https://docs.google.com/document/d/1aACcbkyZjR7nZy_wWeGQ9U2iGy0y4QajBeOL8RqAZIQ/mobilebasic

Also, The amazing Team of Prakash Lab and many other interdisciplinary scientists from across the world are working on Pneumask: Reusable Full-Face Snorkel Mask PPE Project for more info check >
http://web.stanford.edu/group/prakash-lab/cgi-bin/labsite/covid19/covid-19-pneumask/
Such a great example for the world. Keep it up @manup you and everyone who are making this incredible effort.

Stay safe, keep learning and save lives.

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