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Coronavirus The inventor of N95 masks interrupts his retirement to fight the pandemic

Peter Tsai, inventor of N95 masks, has suspended his retirement to fight the pandemic. This 68-year-old Taiwanese doctor has acknowledged in statements to . that “I prefer to live the rest of my years with the certainty of having saved lives than getting rich.”

He is an expert in Textile Technology and professor, which led him to create in 1992 one of the best protection elements to face the COVID-19. These masks have also improved over the years due to the new combinations of fibers with which they are manufactured.

Long working hours

Tsai has assured that sometimes he works more than 15 hours in a row at his home in Knoxville, Tennessee, and that his phone started ringing earlier this year and has not stopped since then: “I felt it was my responsibility to do something about being the inventor of this much-in-demand technology.”

Evidence at home

To try different options, decided to improvise a laboratory at his home. Tested the efficiency of various techniques to sterilize and reuse respirators, which have been highly prized in all countries in the face of their scarcity.

Also performed other kinds of experiments for additional help: “Placing the mask in a dry heat of 70 degrees Celsius for 60 minutes allows it to be sterilized without losing electrostatic chargeWith these trials, he has raised new production lines for the N95 and it has converted others with the purpose of saving as many lives as possible.

Massive production

Thanks to your collaboration with Oak Ridge Labs, have managed to produce fibers for 9,000 N95 masks an hour. All this also does it altruistically: “Basically, I haven’t received money for the job. “, although on some occasions it has received a symbolic payment required by some institutions. So, Tsai He stresses that “it is more valuable to help people and save lives than to earn money and become rich.”

Due to all this effort, has managed to perfect a technology based on nonwoven fibers (generated by mechanical procedures), which cause an electrostatic charge and repel 95% of particles, among them, viruses that are transported in microscopic drops of saliva in air.

For the construction

The N95s were originally intended to protect workers in industry and construction, although they soon gained relevance in the health sector. First, its usefulness for curb the spread of tuberculosis, and later, to prevent the spread of SARS in 2003.

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