Mumbai

Swiss company unveils masks made from fabric "that can kill coronavirus"

Reusable: The Swiss firm will soon begin producing 150 masks a week, which will be sold for ₹1,490 to ₹1,990.   | Photo Credit: PrashantNakwe

A Switzerland-based hygiene company has claimed that its technology for disinfecting textiles has, through tests, been observed to also destroy the novel coronavirus. Owned by Sanjeev Swamy, the company is running trials to make masks using this technology that will soon be available in Mumbai and Bengaluru.

This was announced in a webinar on Wednesday by Livinguard Technology, an environment-friendly hygiene technology platform based in Zug, Switzerland, that is part of the World Economic Forum Innovators Community. It is the first firm to empower textiles and materials with self-disinfecting properties.

“The underlying principle is to empower the surface of the textile with a strong positive charge. When microbes come in contact with fabric, the microbial cell, which is negatively charged, is destroyed, leading to permanent destruction of the micro organism. The technology makes the fabric reusable, allowing users to use the mask up to 210 times with no compromise on safety or efficacy. Further, the masks are washable,” Mr. Swamy said.

This technology, he added, has endured multiple uses and washes, and is being used on face masks, gloves and wipes to avoid cross-contamination. The mask is seen to have a broad spectrum of microbial killing capabilities, ranging from ebola, tuberculosis to athlete’s foot. It’s use reduces the environmental waste caused by disposable masks by approximately 36,000 tonnes every week.

“Our focus is now on getting suitable textiles to the industries that are affected by COVID-19, like healthcare and hospitality. We have also developed fine filters for air conditioners, with a partner company in Switzerland, and a non-woven mesh, with companies in Germany, for which testing is under way,” he said.

Masks treated with the Livinguard technology are currently available in Portugal, Israel, Sri Lanka, Jordan, UAE, Canada, Mexico, Germany and China. They are also being manufactured in the United States for their military.

“We have already started operational trials in plants in Navi Mumbai and Bengaluru, with permission from the respective State governments, and will soon begin producing 150 masks a week, which will be sold for ₹1,490 to ₹1,990,” Mr. Swamy pointed out.

He said he chose Mumbai and Bengaluru as he is familiar with both the cities and their market dynamics.

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Printable version | Nov 29, 2020 8:04:13 PM | https://www.thehindu.com/news/cities/mumbai/swiss-company-unveils-masks-made-from-fabric-that-can-kill-coronavirus/article31855457.ece

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