Shortage of N-95 and equivalent safe masks is an important challenge to address. Our 3D Printing & Innovation Lab, Amrita Institute of Medical Sciences. Kochi, had developed our own mask design based on the Monatana Muzzle and fits many COVID-19 filters. The design offers more space between the nose/mouth and the filter, making it more comfortable to wear and breathe.
A screw-on space allows for a circular patch of filter to be easily applied and removed. The filter material we have chosen for ‘COVID-19-mitigation’ purposes is 4-ply ultrasonically bonded polypropylene (SMMS) material validated for its fluid-repellency and viral filtration ability. Alternate material would be the novel Nano filter developed at Amrita University. Patches cut out of 3-ply surgical masks can also be used as a filter.
A specially designed band holds the mask in place and can be tightened or loosened as per need. The mask is quite adaptable.
The mask is currently being 3D-printed using PLA material on FDM printers, allowing numerous personalization options. Injection-mould based manufacturing would help scale up production significantly. The mask is being validated for regulatory requirements and for clinical use. The point-of-care 3D printing Lab has enabled clinicians to actively participate and co-create this innovative mask design.