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Ahlstrom expands the production of face mask materials

13
Apr '20
Pic: Shutterstock
Pic: Shutterstock
Ahlstrom-Munksjo is expanding the production of face mask materials to a line normally used for industrial filtration materials at the Tampere plant in Finland. The exponential spread of the COVID-19 virus has created a strong demand for healthcare goods in general, and specifically for protective medical products that are made from the company’s fabrics.

The company is also expanding manufacturing of fabrics production lines normally used for producing other fibre-based materials and providing support with its in-depth knowledge of fibre-based solutions.

In the beginning of March 2020, the company expanded the production of face mask materials to a fine fibre line normally used for industrial filtration materials at the Turin plant, Italy. The technology is unique, generating good protection and breathability for medical use, and approved as a surgical mask. The advantage of this technology compared to the commonly available electrostatically charged material is its durability. Protection efficiency of electrostatically charged materials is lost overtime when humidity gets in contact with the filter media, whereas protection efficiency of a mechanical filter media remains intact over time. First orders were received in the middle of March 2020, and Ahlstrom-Munksjö is now targeting to ramp up fabrics production for more than 20 million face masks per month, according to a press release by the company.

Currently, the material is well suited for lighter fabric face masks in civil activities. Droplets test shows that the media has efficiency above 90 per cent at three microns and above 85 per cent at one micron, which is close to a surgical face mask requirement. Development continues to meet the requirements of material for surgical masks for medical use. Considering the ongoing production, the Tampere plant can deliver fabrics for around ten million face masks per month on a short notice.

Fibre2Fashion News Desk (GK)


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