Textile Technology section
Texas Tech: decontamination wipe could help corona virus cleanup efforts
A decontamination wipe from Texas Tech University, Lubbock, TX/USA, to clean up toxic agents also could clean up bodily fluids contaminated with the corona virus. FiberTect is a 3-layer, nonwoven wipe that features an activated carbon core sandwiched between absorbent top and bottom layers.
The wipe's structure is effective in containing bodily fluids – like saliva and mucus – through which viruses could be transmitted. Its activated carbon also can absorb particles transmitted in vapor phase through the air. It is widely used as the primary dry decontamination method in hospitals and ambulances in the USA. Hospitals use it in bulk and in rolls, and ambulances use it in a kit called the FastGrab to do immediate decontamination of patients contaminated with a wide variety of substances.
As a wipe or mitt, FiberTect holds great potential for cleaning in settings where transmission of the corona virus is a main concern. Highly porous carbon in the structure can trap the vapors and aerosols in which microbes are contained. The wipe structure is flexible and can take the shape of the objects to be cleaned. The 3-ply structure without glue helps this effective cleaning.
FiberTect has previously been used successfully by the US military to decontaminate both personnel and equipment, for oil spill cleanup during the Deepwater Horizon spill in the Gulf of Mexico, and by emergency response teams across the USA in dealing with highly dangerous chemical substances, including Fentanyl.
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