UTICA, N.Y. (UPDATED) – SUNY Polytechnic Institute has been awarded a grant from the State University of New York to research and create a solid-state face mask air filter.
"I am extremely proud our faculty members who received this award, which will support SUNY Poly research as a force for good during this COVID-19 pandemic through the development of novel personal protective equipment," said Dr. Andre Melendez, the interim dean of the College of Nanoscale Science and Engineering at SUNY Poly.
The funds will help further the development of a battery-powered device that can filter out virus particles, including COVID-19.
Assistant Professor of Engineering Technology Dr. Iulian Gherasoiu, Associate Professor of Nanoengineering Dr. Harry Efstathiadis, and Associate Professor of Nanobioscience Dr. Michael Fasullo are working collaboratively on the effort.
Gherasouiu, a professor at the Marcy campus, says the goal is to make a universal technology that can also be used to inactivate other viruses.
"It would be a mask, or an air filter, with larger applicability. It would be intended mostly for biological agents -- like viruses, bacteria -- and would work without differentiating between the type of biological agent, so in that sense it would be more universal," he said.
Staff will work on the project at both the Marcy and Albany campuses.