As it becomes apparent that the COVID-19 virus can be exhaled as an airborne pathogen, it becomes equally important to protect oneself from inhaling the virus in its bioaerosol form.
Proposed is a downdraft visor, the device worn as shown provides a steady downdraft stream of filtered air across the wearer’s face. A rechargeable battery unit powers mini-fans to draw in ambient air through a milli-pore HEPA filtration cartridge directing it downward in front of the wearer’s face.
The constant stream of filtered air directed across the front of the wearer's face at 50ft/min provides sufficient airflow to prevent exhaled aerosolized droplets of the COVID-19 virus entering the user’s airways via the nose and mouth into the lungs.
The device can be realized using existing manufacturing techniques and materials for the fans, filter and rechargeable battery components to provide many hours of active use. This inexpensive, reusable and rechargeable product can be worn as designed or integrated within current face shield designs.
Intended for use by the healthy general public as an additional mitigating factor with existing physical distancing and hand washing protocols. The benefits of this device include reducing demand for M-95 surgical masks and reduction of raw material consumption with subsequent waste disposal while providing protection with greater comfort.
Medical personnel who are not infected can also benefit from a Downdraft Visor, not only for the protection it provides, but also for the comfort of one’s face bathed in a gentle breeze rather than pressed against a mask that accumulates nasal / oral excretions for the long periods of time in use.
At the time of this writing, the COVID-19 virus is pandemic while face masks are a consumable, limited use product experiencing delays in supply chain fulfillment which places people at risk. The Downdraft Visor is a product that can be re-used indefinitely given battery recharging and filter cleansing.
I appreciate and applaud all essential personnel facing the public at this time of crisis; they deserve our help as they help all of us. I don’t have the resources to make this product a reality, but I hope someone else can.