In a study published in the Journal of the Acoustical Society of America (JASA) on June 30, 2020, they discussed different types of masks and their effectiveness at preventing droplet spread. It was noted that although masks may help mitigate the risk of spreading infection via respiratory droplets, there are no specific guidelines on mask materials and designs. The study found that loosely folded face masks and bandana-style coverings provide minimal stopping-capability for the smallest aerosolized respiratory droplets.
Homemade, well-fitted masks with multiple layers of quilting fabric and off-the-shelf cone style masks proved to be the most effective in reducing droplet dispersal. The study involved testing several different types of masks and findings include:
|Mask Type||Material||Threads/inch||Average Jet Distance|
|Bandana||Elastic t-shirt material||85||~3 feet 7 inches|
|Folded Hankerchief||Cotton||55||~One foot 3 inches|
|Stitched Mask||Quilting cotton||70||2.5 inches|
|Commercial Mask||Unknown||Randomly Assorted||8 inches|
So, as you determine which mask is best for you, consider these statistics and make the right choice. At the end of the day, masks are required so choose wisely. Stay well, stay safe and stay tuned!
Read the full study here.