The coronavirus pandemic has transformed many companies’ assembly lines into mask-making operations, including several using graphene ink and other methods of incorporating the wonder material into facemasks. A new soon-to-be-published study is confirming that the addition of graphene does indeed improve a mask’s ability to thwart viruses and other infections.
Based on tests performed at the Gemelli, the largest hospital in Rome, researchers found that graphene atoms’ shape is effective against viruses because they can shred its cell membranes. The researchers wrote that adding graphene nanoparticles to cotton masks, the ability for viruses to travel through the material is “significantly reduced.” However, researchers noted that some coronavirus still made it through.
“The results of the research show that adding graphene to material is highly effective in inhibiting the passage of SARS-CoV-2,” said research lead Professor Massimiliano Papi of the Catholic University of Rome.
The team performed the testing on the G+ line of washable masks, produced by Directa Plus, a London-headquartered company specializing in graphene products. The company said it’s in talks with UK office suppliers who are interested in providing their office workers with the G+ masks.