Faced with shortages, researchers combine heat and humidity to disinfect N95 masks — ScienceDaily

As the COVID-19 pandemic swept around the world early this year, shortages of protective equipment such as N95 masks left healthcare workers little choice but to reuse the masks they had — increasing the risk of infection for both them and their patients.

Now, researchers at the Department of Energy’s SLAC National Accelerator Laboratory, Stanford University and the University of Texas Medical Branch may have a solution: Using a combination of moderate heat and high relative humidity, the team was able to disinfect N95 mask materials without hampering their ability to filter out viruses.

What’s more, it should not be too difficult to turn the new results into an automated system hospitals could use in short order — because the process is so simple, it might take just a few months to design and test a device.

“This is really an issue, so if you can find a way to

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