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Virtual Fall Conference Includes Session on “Face Masks - Industry Updates”

The American Filtration & Separations Society will devote its entire fall conference on December 2 and 3 to the air filtration industry’s response to COVID-19: What we have witnessed, what we have learned, and what is on the horizon.

To drill down into specific filtration areas that are responding to the pandemic, the conference is offering six sessions:

  1. Recent Developments in Filter Media
  2. Face Masks - Industry Update
  3. Laboratory Testing for Performance Against Bioaerosols
  4. Air Filtration for Confined Spaces I
  5. Air Filtration for Confined Spaces II
  6. Disruptions to the Filtration Industry

In the “Face Masks – Industry Updates" session on December 2, three subject matter experts will each deliver a 20-minute presentation.

Imad Khalek, Senior Program Manager over particle emissions activities at Southwest Research Institute and founder of the Particle Science & Technology Laboratory, will present “Mask Filtration Efficiency – A New Perspective.”

This presentation will report on research done by the Particle Science & Technology Laboratory at Southwest Research Institute on the filtration efficiency of several filter media and mask types. It will address parameters that impact filtration efficiency, such as neutralized vs un-neutralized particles, velocity and particle size. This presentation will show that the current approach of mask testing may not protect well against most penetrating particles, and the size distribution definition for testing N95 masks is broadly defined. Contrary to that, it will show that the stringency of mask testing for N95 may not be necessary for hospital use, especially in the middle of a pandemic. Such relaxation will allow for more materials to be qualified as N95 respirator masks. 
READ MORE ABOUT IMAD KHALEK HERE.

Michael Corbat, Vice President of Product Development for Rensa Filtration, will present “Commercialization of Surgical Face Masks.”

With the explosion in face mask demand and the related shortage of them in health care facilitiesdue to the pandemic, it is important to review the requirements needed to enter the medical market. This presentation will include an overview of ASTM F2100 testing procedures of face masks and some testing requirements that are not explicitly stated in ASTM but are required for FDA approval. This presentation will review the process of submitting formal paperwork to the FDA, and the Emergency Use Authorization regarding facemasks. Finally, the discussion will include literature, manufacturing requirements, quality systems, and other requirements needed to minimize risk following product commercialization.
READ MORE ABOUT MICHAEL CORBAT HERE.

Shawn Chen, Assistant Professor of Mechanical and Nuclear Engineering, Virginia Commonwealth University, will present “Microstructure Change of Masks and Respirators During Loud Talking, Coughing and Sneezing.”

Face mask wearing by the general public is recommended as a best practice during the pandemic, especially in poorly ventilated indoor environments and densely populated communities. Face masks serve to slow virus transmission by containing virus-loaded droplets produced by an infected person during normal breathing, talking, coughing and sneezing. Evidence shows that millions of SARS-CoV-2 particles per hour are exhaled by infected patients in early stages. This presentation will explore air velocity, flow rate, current standards, and the effect on mask media microstructure.
READ MORE ABOUT SHAWN CHEN HERE.

Registration for the AFS Virtual Conference is now open.
VIEW THE ENTIRE CONFERENCE PROGRAM HERE.
PROCEED TO REGISTRATION HERE.

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