According to an IIT-Delhi statement, the ”Kawach” mask is at par with the N95 mask in effectiveness, but costs just Rs 45 a piece.
“The cost of N95 mask used for protection against Covid-19 in India is high, making it unaffordable for the masses. The ”Kawach” mask, developed by ETEX, is at par with N95 in terms of fitting and engineered filtration layer that could provide up to 98 per cent filtration efficiency (3 micron size particle). The price has been kept affordable so that it can reach the masses for enhanced protection,” the IIT-Delhi said.
The product efficiency is backed with the strong technical inputs from the core textile team in the Department of Textile and Fibre Engineering, IIT-D.
Prof Bipin Kumar of the Textile and Fiber Engineering Department, IIT-D, said, “India has several massive challenges ahead – disposal of PPEs (including mask and coveralls) after one-time use and ensuring the minimum use of non-woven technology for PPEs. The ”Kawach” mask is a result of our indigenous manufacturing capabilities.”
The startup team is also working on prototype of mask to make it washable and reusable at least 10 times. This could help protect our massive population in the most economical and effective way, it added.
The team is also exploring other textile technologies for developing coveralls and seeking funding support to scale up.