Release of results on the effectiveness of masks at capturing particles


About the project

Although there are many different opinions on the effectiveness of masks as a measure to prevent infectious diseases, some of these arguments are not based on scientific evidence. The basic and most important function of a mask, "capturing particles," was focused on in this project, and through the provision of the results of various experiments, scientifically science-based information on the meaning behind wearing a mask is being shared with many people.

The following is a summary of some of the experiment results and observations based on these. Wearing a mask alone does not prevent infections, but it is thought that wearing a mask is effective in reducing the spread of infectious diseases.

  • Surgical masks are highly effective at capturing particles.
    (However, if the mask is not in close contact with the face, its effectiveness is reduced.)
  • Masks reduce the droplets and particles exhaled from the mouth.
  • Particles smaller than the mesh of the mask are also captured by the mask.
    (Although not 100% of these particles are captured.)
  • Washing a nonwoven mask with detergent significantly reduces its effectiveness to capture particles.
  • Although the effectiveness of cloth masks at capturing particles is low, this can be improved by adding a paper towel, etc.
  • When commercial masks are not available, using a paper towel, etc., as an alternative still has some effect in capturing particles.
  • 【Information for healthcare professionals】Up to 3 times of vapor or ozone treatments of mask do not show a significant decrease in its effectiveness to capture particles.

Experiment video (YouTube)

Project members

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