Pune-based startup ThInCr Technologies has come up with 3d printed masks coated with anti-viral agents known as virucides. These anti-viral agents can neutralize novel coronavirus as it comes in touch with it.
The virucidal mask project is one of the first projects to have been selected for commercialization by the Technology Development Board (TDB), a statutory body of the Department of Science and Technology, Government of India, in an attempt at the Government’s fight against COVID-19.
ThInCr Technologies, with support from Merck Life Sciences, developed the masks. The coating formulation is applied on the fabric layer and 3D printing technology is employed for achieving uniformity of coating.
3D Printing for uniform application
The coated layer can be fused as an additional layering for N-95 masks, 3-Ply masks, cloth masks, 3D printed or other plastic masks, along with reusable filters. The coated masks will provide extra protection from corona virus besides the protection achieved by filtration mechanisms.
“The coating has been tested and shown to inactivate the SARS-COV-2 virus. The material used for coating on the mask is a Sodium Olefin Sulfonate-based mixture. It is a soap forming agent with hydrophilic and hydrophobic properties. In contact with enveloped viruses, it disrupts the outer membrane of the virus. The ingredients used are stable at room temperature and are widely used in cosmetics,” the Ministry of Science and Technology said in a statement.
ThInCr Technologies Founder Director Dr. Shitalkumar Zambad said that the masks have higher than 95 percent of bacterial filtration efficiency. The start-up has started commercial-scale production of the anti-viral masks and even applied for a patent of this product.
The filters of these reusable masks are also developed using 3D printing. The startup has applied for a patent for its product. Around 6,000 virucidal masks developed by the startup were distributed by an NGO to four government hospitals in Nandurbar, Nashik and Bengaluru, for healthcare workers and girls’ schools and colleges in Bengaluru.