CMU develops effective and comfortable new mask

CityNews – 3rd April 2020, The Environmental Science Research Centre and Chiang Mai University, Faculty of Science’s Department of Mechanical Engineering have developed a positive pressure MasquraX@CMU to help combat pollution.

Dr. Wan Wiriya, assistant head of the Environmental Science Research Centre along with students and colleagues launched the MasquraX@CMU mask today which he says is designed to be much more comfortable to wear, as it allows for easy breathing and is not claustrophobic like many others masks in the market. He says that it will be very useful for fire fighters, traffic police and people who should be wearing masks all the time during the pollution months, making their jobs much less difficult.

Dr. Wan told reporters that he had long worked on mask development. He explained that there were two main considerations, one being effectiveness, such as the lauded N95 masks which filter up to 95% of PM2.5 particles. The second is having a mask which is as airtight as possible. These masks, he says, often come with their own set of challenges, and that is that they are hard to breathe through which reduces their efficiency.

He says that this new mask the team has developed is air tight around the face, but allows for air to pass through, which saves energy for those struggling to breathe through normal masks.

The secret is the changeable filtering device which is attached to the hip or the waistline.  There is even a air suction device which pulls the air from the filer through a tube to the mask, which provides clean fresh air. This means that the mask doesn’t have to be air tight as there is always a flow of fresh air to the nose and mouth. This constant stream of fresh air then repels any noxious gas or air from entering the mask due to its positive pressure.  This system can also be used with existing masks in the market.

They are now working on a generation two of the mask which will include a small battery for maximum efficiency. The team is working to develop other applications and usages for different needs. For more information (in Thai) please visit Facebook: ศูนย์วิชาการเพื่อสนับสนุนการแก้ไขปัญหาหมอกควันภาคเหนือ มช