WHAT IS THE STANDARD OF MASKLAB™ 3-PLY SURGICAL FACE MASK
masklab™ products have been tested by two labs to two different standards: Eurofins for EU's EN 14683 and Nelson Labs for US's ASTM F2100.
Eurofins is one of Europe's leading testing laboratories. Its size is comparable to that of SGS. It is 1 of 12 labs named on EA's accredited labs list for EN 14683. You may learn more about them on their website or on Wikipedia.
Nelson Labs is the leading global provider of laboratory testing, and is one of the world's first and only provider of the Particle Filtration Efficiency: Latex Particle Challenge Test. Their main laboratory is in Salt Lake City, Utah, United States. You may learn more about them on their website.
masklab™ products have been tested by SGS to the most stringent EU PPE mask standard EN 149. Achieved oil-free high-flow-rate aerosol particulate filtration of 95% while breathability maintains at Delta P 5.3 mmH2O / cm²
EU’s PPE mask standard EN 149 is very strict (more stringent than the US equivalent of N95), the air flow rate used in filtration tests is 3 times higher than that of the ASTM standard for surgical masks. EN 149 also implements a tight-seal leakage test. However, there is no specification for breathability. So while PPE respirators are usually more protective than surgical masks, they are also very difficult to breathe in! At masklab, we reduced the oil-based aerosol filtration rate, which we believe to be less important in the pandemic, to 85%, thus enhancing our breathability to Delta P 5.3 (generally KF94 masks are above 9.0) Our overall level is FFP1, but our protection against viruses is actually FFP2 level.
Many people may wonder: Oil-free high-flow-rate aerosol particulate filtration of 95%? Does that mean respirators are less protective than Level 2 or Level 3 surgical masks?
The answer is: No, absolutely not. Quite the opposite.
First, the test flow rate used by EN 149 is 95 L/min, while ASTM Level X uses 28.3 L/min. Many surgical masks with more than 95% PFE would test to be less than 70% under EN 149 parameters. The main reason is that the efficiency of the filter material is often affected by the air flow rate. The larger the air flow rate, the lower the efficiency of filtering particles.
Secondly, EN 149 implements a sealing test to ensure that the air leakage caused by the gap between the face and the mask will not exceed the standard. The masklab KF series have been tested to have a total inward leakage of less than 15%. This is not tested for surgical masks, so many of them have very high air leakage, which makes them more suitable for protecting others, not for protecting oneself.
EN 149 test report (SGS) can be viewed here: https://bit.ly/2ZBnlgg
The shortened explanation can be seen below: