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Based on graphene made a more durable respirator

02.03.2021 60 просмотров

Scientists from India have created durable and cheap graphene-based respirators.

Physicists in India have found that conventional N95-class respirators can be made significantly more durable and effective by inserting a layer containing a paste of graphene and organic fluorine into them. The manufacturing instructions for these masks have been published in Oxford Open Materials Science.

mechanical influences. We hope this will make respirators and masks affordable for all socioeconomic classes,” the researchers wrote.

After initial skepticism from the WHO in February and March last year, masks and respirators began to be widely used to slow the spread of coronavirus in all countries of the world. Their use was initially hampered by an acute shortage, which forced doctors to independently invent artisanal methods for disinfecting masks, and ordinary people to sew them from improvised materials.

A group of Indian physicists led by Tarangattu Narayanan, Associate Professor Tata Research in Hyderabad found out how masks can be made more durable by studying how virus particles interact with different layers of these protective devices. , capable of attracting microscopic particles of matter to itself through electrostatic interactions. Over time, it loses its effectiveness, which causes a limited life of respirators and masks.

A new level of protection

Tarangattu Narayanan and his colleagues found out that this problem can be circumvented by coating one of the inner layers of the respirator with a paste consisting of graphene and fluorine-containing organic compounds. At rest, this mixture is just as effective at attracting viruses and fine dust as the materials commonly used for these purposes in the manufacture of N95 respirators.

These adherent particles, in turn, can be easily removed from this material due to the fact that its electrical properties change greatly when mechanical loads are applied. In other words, it is enough to rub this tissue with a finger to remove a significant part of the virus particles from it. In addition, the mixture of graphene and fluorine compounds is chemically inert and can be easily cleaned of microbes and large dust particles with hydrogen peroxide.

Guided by similar considerations, Indian physicists have assembled several prototype respirators based on this approach, varying number of protective layers and their thickness. As it turns out, it only takes three layers of fabric to achieve the level of protection afforded by N95 respirators, rather than the four or five layers found in existing protective systems of this level.

Subsequent observations showed that the prototype respirators were successfully transferred several cleaning cycles without visible deterioration in the quality of their work, which allows them to be used in practice. As scientists hope, the low cost of such protective devices, which does not exceed the US dollar, will accelerate their penetration into medical practice.

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