This face mask can detect the presence of an airborne illness

This face mask can detect the presence of an airborne illness ...

The COVID-19 epidemic's unofficial symbol, face masks, are starting to flaunt.

Within ten minutes of exposure, a mask equipped with special equipment can detect SARS-CoV-2, the virus that causes COVID-19, and other airborne viruses, according to materials researcher Yin Fang and colleagues.

According to Fang of Tongji University in Shanghai, this face mask is light and comfortable, and it is anticipated to serve as an early warning device to prevenie large outbreaks of respiratory infectious diseases.

Airborne illnesses can slam a ride between hosts in the air droplets that people breathe in and out. By talking, coughing, and sneezing, people with no signs of being sick can sometimes pass on these viruses; people who are infected with SARS-CoV-2 can begin infecting others within two days of showing symptoms (SN: 3/13/20).

Fang and his colleagues developed a special sensor that responds to the presence of certain viral proteins in the air and attached it to a face mask. They then spritzed droplets containing proteins from the viruses that cause COVID-19, bird flu, or swine flu into a chamber with the mask.

The sensor could detect only a fraction of a microliter of these proteins — a cough might contain ten to eight times as much. Eventually, the researchers expect such signals to be sent to a wearer's phone or other devices.

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