Developing a novel filter material for protective gears for health care (COVID -19) from BCTMP (Bleached Chemi-Thermo-Mechanical Pulp)

  • Author / Creator
    Lin, Ziyi
  • Under the background of COVID-19 global pandemic, personal protective equipment (PPE), especially masks, has been highly demanded. Also, this high requirement has resulted in ocean pollution since the main material, polypropylene, is non-biodegradable and expensive. The production processes are also complicated. To solve the scarcity of PPE and the environmental risks caused by commercial masks, people have been concerned to use environmentally friendly and inexpensive materials. Wood-pulp-based filter media have been studied for years. This thesis developed a novel filter material bleached chemi-thermo-mechanical pulp. Filter papers were made from two grades of wood pulp separately. The basis weight of them was half of that of the N95 mask middle layer (filter layer). The morphology of pulp filters was analysed by digital and scanning electron microscope (SEM). Filtration efficiency and pressure drop of pulp filters were measured and compared with commercial N95 masks. To simulate ultra-fine particles, activated carbon powder and candle smoke were used. Both traditional N95 masks and novel filter media showed satisfying performance on carbon powder collection, while pulp filters performed better on candle smoke tests. The only problem for pulp filters is the high pressure drop, which reflects the breathing resistance. Hence, from the filtration efficiency side, the wood pulp has the potential to be a raw material of masks. However, the high pressure drop, as well as filters with basis weight close to the middle layer of N95 masks, need further studies.

  • Subjects / Keywords
  • Graduation date
    Fall 2021
  • Type of Item
  • Degree
    Master of Science
  • DOI
  • License
    This thesis is made available by the University of Alberta Libraries with permission of the copyright owner solely for non-commercial purposes. This thesis, or any portion thereof, may not otherwise be copied or reproduced without the written consent of the copyright owner, except to the extent permitted by Canadian copyright law.