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Discussion Starter #1
I know this was in another thread here but I was talking with a respiratory therapist who is also my state assembly man today we were discussing the lack of masks and other PPE at hospitals. Of course re-using masks came up, not being aware of how the masks were made I found out they can be low temperature sterilized . Now unless you know the temp for every little bugger out there this isn't something I would recommend for hospitals but it would be better than nothing. If UV sterilization is added it might be ok for reuse by another person. A bunch of us probably remember that case in shop class that we put safety glasses in that's UV sterilization.
The last I have heard the virus is not visible above 80 degrees in moist environments.
Now for home use if a simple filter is added to a n95 mask like a coffee filter that will prevent larger particles from plugging the mask ( which is a good idea for shop use BTW) now temp around 90-100 degrees for about an hour could kill the virus plus dry the mask from moisture from wearing UV should kill the rest. I think this could also work with cartridge filters. Although higher temps would be better the risk of melting or burning is there. Wet methods as well will probably ruin the mask.
A bit of time in an oven with a tray of water for moisture or a run thru a dryer on steam setting could do the trick. Now in the dryer I would put them in a container that they could tumble in as not to damage like those ball cap forms or some dryers have trays for sweaters that could work too.
Good luck stay safe.

BTW I do not believe in reusing one time use items and it's a shame we are even talking about this in this day and age.!
 

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Hello,
You're telling me that they make clothes dryers with a steaming setting, now.
Man, am I behind the times.... I still just throw a damp towel in there with the wrinkled clothes.
We installed new Samsung front loading appliances in our laundry a few years ago. My plumber commented that it was the first time he had ever run a water line to an electric dryer.
 

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The N95 masks, at best filter from .6, to .3 microns; that is, if properly fitted. The COVID-19 virus has a diameter of .18 microns.

It might help more from a wearer to keep from spreading COVID-19.
 

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The N95 masks, at best filter from .6, to .3 microns; that is, if properly fitted. The COVID-19 virus has a diameter of .18 microns.

It might help more from a wearer to keep from spreading COVID-19.
Thanks for sharing the length scale stats of COVID 19 and N95 masks. Interesting.

I have a background in nano technology. I would say an N95 mask certainly helps the wearer and those around them. But like you said, most viruses are in the 100-200 nm diameter range. But beyond pore size, electrostatics can play a huge part in adsoprtion behavior of the material.

As far as sterilization goes? It need not be sterile -N95 masks, to my knowledge, come in a cardboard box or non sterile packaging. The ones we have at work are that way anyway. As far as sanitizing them? Put a bit of water on the in side of the mask, and microwave for 20 seconds.
 

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As far as sanitizing them? Put a bit of water on the in side of the mask, and microwave for 20 seconds.
Hello,
That's what I do with my money, if dealing with cash change. It goes from their hands, straight into a plastic bag(trick or treat style), then the microwave. A few other steps involved.... But, I don't touch it, right now.
Most people; licks their fingers to count paper money... Bad habit to break.
 

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My plumber commented that it was the first time he had ever run a water line to an electric dryer.
Hello,
Same thing. When I first saw an "electrified" on-demand showerhead in Mexico, some twenty years back..... I was a little reluctant to take a shower with hot water that night.
 

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Discussion Starter #9
At 100 degree in moist heat is a high enough to kill the virus but not enough to sterilize from all bacteria.
The mask has metal components so I would not put it in a microwave. No mask is perfect and that includes positive pressure respirators but it's the best I have to use.
Correct it does a better job if it is on the infected but just try to get them to wear it.
Handling and reusing one time masks is a risk of infection just by touching it if it became infected.
I not here to argue sizes of bacteria or viruses but masks are a filter that can do a little more than the size of the holes in them the microscopic rough spaces as well as lack of moisture can physically damage cells as well it decreases the number that can pass . It's like a bulletproof vest some things get thru.
This is in some way based on the facts at hand but also experience of using them and not getting infected by other viruses and bacteria.
Right now the CDC is very irresponsible telling us to wear scarves and bandannas.
 

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Just remember that the N95 masks needs to be fit tested to each user, using either a quantitate or qualitative fit test. As Firefighters we were tested every year for that test, it was required by NFPA.

Be safe out there !!DISHOUT
 

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Photo was taken a few years ago on a lobster boat tour in Maine. Sitting next to the bait bucket, I had to come up with something.
 

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I used one while counting donations at church. When I got back home I put it in a plastic box in the garage after a week I’ll feel ok about reusing it for shopping or something. Probably will limit use to 2x.
 

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Masks are only good so that you don't touch your face with your booger hooks.
 
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I imagine COVID is transmitted differently at different distances. If someone coughs, their breath will contain a spray of droplets with a viral payload which will spread differently. Fairly large droplets >5um, will fall out of the air pretty quickly and land on a surface within about 3-4 feet. Smaller droplets will float a while before landing. Even smaller droplets will evaporate before they hit the floor, and the virus that was in it can remain floating.

I've not read, but I will guess that droplets are more infectious than floating virus. When you cough, a single droplet can have thousands of viruses in it. If it goes into your eye or you inhale it, you get all of them. Once the water evaporates, and the hydrogen bonds are removed, the viral load will disperse and dilute, like smoke. If you breathe this 'smoke', and get only a few viruses into you, I presume your immune system might have a chance of beating them. If you get a few thousand at once, your chance goes down.

So droplets are presumably the most dangerous. If you are in close proximity to infected people where the larger droplets are common, mask will help stop the droplets. If they have a mask and you have a mask, the droplets have less chance of getting to you.
 
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