Face Masks

The COVID-19 pandemic increased global awareness of the need for antipathogenic masks, medical gowns, IT devices, air filters, and much more. The global reusable mask market is expected to reach $7.08 billion by 2027 according to a new report by Grand View Research, Inc. Beyond containing viruses and bacteria, the health effects of particulate pollution, dust, and smoke, and respiratory diseases will continue to drive the market for protective face masks.

SINTX FleX SN-AP has rapid antipathogenic activity against a broad range of bacteria and viruses, including SARS-CoV-2 61,62. It can help create a safe and effective consumer face mask with broad-spectrum antibacterial and antiviral activity. SINTX continues to research and develop silicon nitride embedded fabrics to apply to consumer face masks as other products like antimicrobial surfaces, surgical gowns, filters, and protective medical equipment.

Why is Silicon Nitride So Effective for Face Masks?

Bacterial Resistance

Bacterial infection of any biomaterial implant is a serious clinical problem. Silicon nitride is inherently resistant to bacteria and biofilm formation54,56. The antibacterial behavior of silicon nitride is probably multifactorial, and relates to surface chemistry, surface pH, texture, and electrical charge7. Optimizing these surface properties for specific implants is a clear advantage of the material.


Silicon nitride has been proven to successfully inactivate viruses like SARS-CoV-2, H1N1 and Influenza A (the common flu). Test results have shown that fabrics containing SINTX’s silicon nitride continue to demonstrate inactivation of viruses upon contact. Earlier tests had shown that sintered silicon nitride powders reduced viral loads by as much as 99.99%, starting at one minute after exposure to silicon nitride.


Silicon nitride has also shown to be effective against certain fungi. Tests conducted against a virulent human fugus Candida albicans (Pezzotti et al., 2021) and an agriculture fugus Plasmopara viticola (Pezzotti et al., 2020) demonstrated inactivation rates of ~ 99.9% in 24 h and ~80% in 2 h, respectively.
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