Since the beginning of the COVID – 19 pandemic CAPPA researchers have been exploring ways in which they can provide their services and expertise to help the fight against the virus. CAPPA researcher Dr Steven Darby has been involved in the development of the definition of the National Standards Authority of Ireland (NSAI) standards for barrier masks and as part of the Irish Delegation for the European Committee for Standardization (CEN).

The NSAI standard for barrier masks was recently published and provides important information for manufacturers and consumers in relation to barrier masks. The specification was developed in response to a request from the Competition and Consumer Protection Commission and with the view that many Irish manufacturing companies are trying to change their production lines in response to the current pandemic. Cork Institute of Technology staff, including Dr Darby, contributed as experts to the development of this document.

As a result of his significant contribution to the document, Dr Steven Darby was appointed to the Irish delegation to the European Committee for Standardization (CEN), to assist with developing the CEN Workshop Agreement for Community Face Coverings. In most European countries, community masks have become a fundamental element of national strategies guiding the gradual lifting of restrictions across different countries. For this reasons, the European Commission developed a document in order to guide a harmonised and consistent degree of safety in community face coverings. On 17 June 2020, CEN published a free document on the workshop agreement on community face coverings. This document provides the minimum requirements for the design, production and performance assessment of community face coverings intended for consumers, single or reusable. The full agreement can be found here.

CAPPA is committed to providing its facilities and research expertise in every possible aspect to help with the fight against COVID – 19. Even though we are restricted with what we can do, we are still available to speak with you regarding research projects, proposals and product solutions. If you wish to speak with a member of our team contact us here or email [email protected].