High quality, low-cost face mask developed at BARC: Minister Jitendra Singh

Atomic/Nuclear scientists have also developed the protocol for re-use of Personal Protective Equipment (PPEs) subsequent to radiation sterilization, the Union minister of state said.

High quality face mask has been developed at the Bhabha Atomic Research Centre (BARC) Mumbai which is affiliated to the Department of Atomic Energy, Union Minister of State Jitendra Singh said on Sunday.

The mask was developed using HEPA filter and is expected to be cost-effective also, stated Union Minister of State (Independent Charge) of the Ministry of Development of North Eastern Region (DoNER), MoS PMO, Personnel, Public Grievances, Pensions, Atomic Energy and Space.

In addition to the high quality face mask, Singh informed that the Atomic/Nuclear scientists have also developed the protocol for re-use of Personal Protective Equipment (PPEs) subsequent to radiation sterilization. The SOP for the same is under consideration by the Union Health and Family Welfare Ministry, Singh said in a release issued by the Space Ministry.

Identification of new regions to develop RTPCR testing kits has also been accomplished, Singh said, adding that the kit is relatively more economic and expected to analyse relatively faster.

Referring to some of the major activities and initiatives of the Department of Atomic Energy in the last one year, Singh complimented the scientific fraternity for coming to the support of society in the wake of COVID-19 pandemic.

Thanking Prime Minister Narendra Modi for special impetus and budgetary allocation provided to the Department of Atomic Energy in the last six years, Singh said the 20 lakh crore package announced by the prime minister also includes the setting up of irradiation plants across the country to prolong the shelf life of variety of fruits and vegetables.

Singh said one of the important achievements under the Modi government has been that “We have extended the activities of atomic energy to different parts of the country whereas hitherto it remained confined mostly to few States in South India or in West like Maharashtra”.

Work is in progress to set up the first nuclear plant in North India at a place called Gorakhpur, near Delhi, the minister added.

First Published:June 14, 2020, 1:41 p.m.