The number of people infected with corona is also increasing in Würzburg. With the virus, the administration-mandated obligation to wear a face mask is also spreading. With the people in the city you can now see a multitude of different types from industrial goods to self-made cloth flaps. But which of them can actually curb the spread of the pathogen effectively? The Süddeutsche Kunststoffzentrum (SKZ) in Würzburg has the answers.
There are only two state-recognized certification bodies in Germany for testing respiratory masks: in Essen and Bonn. Because they are completely overwhelmed with the explosive range of masks, the SKZ on Friedrich Bergius-Ring, which mainly tests building materials, was approved by the responsible central office of the federal states for security technology (ZLS) in Munich as a testing center that tests shorter and faster can and equips effective respiratory protection with its own CPA mark.
SKZ strives to be recognized as the main testing center for masks
Peter Rössler, a successful entrepreneur and inventor, recently turned up at the SKZ test center on Friedrich-Bergius-Ring. In 2000, the Swabian was Würzburg’s carnival prince. Now he has submitted self-developed respiratory masks with electrical ventilation and heating to SKZ Testing GmbH for testing, which does not exist again like this.
The most important part of the test is how much of the artificially generated aerosols from paraffin oil penetrate the masks. These aerosols simulate the tiny water droplets in which the viruses make their way from person to person, explains the physicist Jürgen Wüst, deputy managing director and responsible for product testing and certification for over 20 years. In addition to the filtration rate, it is also tested on artificial heads how much resistance the mask causes when breathing, which is perceived by many mask wearers as a heavy burden.
It is also tested on test subjects how well the mask fits on the face so that as little breath as possible escapes at the edges. According to Jürgen Wüst, the SKZ is now striving to be recognized as the main testing center for masks. To do this, around half a million euros would have to be invested in equipment. The complex process will probably take a few more months.
Inventor Rössler did well when testing his masks at the SKZ. In Ilsfeld near Heilbronn, he successfully runs his company Weima Maschinenbau, which produces shredders for shredding waste and sells it worldwide.
SKZ gives Rößler’s masks good grades
Respirators are a must in his production because there is always dust here. He has tried a few masks himself, but was not satisfied with any because they made it too difficult for him to breathe. So a year ago he set out to develop masks himself. Then came the corona pandemic and added a lot to the topic.
In the meantime, Peter Rössler offers various high-quality masks with his new company “air2go”. These include models with one or two mini fans that are operated by a small battery and make breathing in and out much easier. They are now very popular with dentists, says the inventor. Now he has gone one better and developed a mask with a tiny heater that heats the air in three stages, making cycling easier in icy temperatures, among other things. There are exchangeable filters for the masks.
The test center of the SKZ has issued Rössler Masken with a good certificate: In terms of the filtration rate, it even slightly exceeds the certified FFP 2 mask, which is used in medicine, because it retains 96.4 percent of aerosols, the FFP 2 “only” 94 percent. Rössler’s mask is much better in terms of breathing resistance, which is less than half as high as the conventional FFP 2 mask.
For comparison, the SKZ also tested other masks made of fabric and paper, all of which had a filtration rate of only around ten percent. More about Rössler’s new masks on the Internet www.air2go.de.
The SKZ in brief: As the largest plastics institute of its kind in Europe, the SKZ has been offering practical solutions for questions relating to plastics and composite materials in training, testing, certification, and research and development for almost 60 years. The SKZ is supported by a powerful network with more than 400 companies.