Aegis Microbe Shield® Technology
Our Performance Fabric
Each of our masks has a special inner lining. It is made of a material that is an athletic fiber, designed to be worn against the skin. This fiber is also designed to wick away moisture from the skin. Mask comfort is largely determined by what’s happening “next-to-skin”. In warm weather, if moisture is allowed to remain you feel a bothersome clamminess. In cooler temperatures this same moisture becomes chilling – robbing you of precious body heat. Breathe Healthy’s mask technology’s “temperature regulating” mastery over moisture accumulation comes from its hydrophobic (moisture-hating) polyester and hydrophilic (moisture-loving) nylon. This combination creates a 2-Zone Comfort Lining® resulting in a push-pull effect that deploys perspiration away from skin.
The lining material Breathe Healthy® uses in all of our masks (we don’t use the name here as competitors have made concerted efforts to discover the source of this technology, but is available through written request with a signed Statement of Intended Use) is patented and features a unique three layer knit construction. When combined with a second layer, they provide effective filtration for allergens, dust, a variety of bacteria, mold spores, and dander, and help protect against airborne effluents resulting from sneezes and coughs.
Features and Benefits
THE TOP LAYER – Consists of hydrophobic (water-hating) texturized moisture transport fibers which pass moisture to the bottom Hydrofil layer
THE MIDDLE LAYER – Comprised of monofilament moisture transport fibers which move moisture and air between the top and bottom layer
THE BOTTOM LAYER – Made of 100% Hydrofil nylon, a unique, patented, hydrophilic (water-loving), nylon fiber engineered to absorb moisture vapor and wick liquid.
The Aegis Microbe Shield® Technology
Commercialization of Dow Corning’s anti-microbial technology began in 1976 after receiving EPA registration under what are called “modern” standards of review. Years of research by Burlington Industries, outside laboratories and Dow Corning verified the safety and utility of direct human contact with this technology. American Hospital Supply Corporation (now part of Baxter International) was reviewing the use of antimicrobials on medical non-woven products. The stringent rules governing the use of any particulates or chemicals that could enter the body via a wound, etc. made this review protocol very severe. Every available antimicrobial, medical and industrial, was screened for basic toxicity, effectiveness against the types of microorganisms encountered in surgery and compatibility with the variety of physical, chemical, and biological contaminants found on fabrics and in wounds, but most importantly, the agents durability to leaching (the consequences of contamination into a wound area can be profound). This research eliminated all other antimicrobials except what is known today as the ÆGIS Antimicrobial. American Hospital Supply Corporation, outside university laboratories, private laboratories and Dow Corning contributed over thirty (30) studies verifying the safety and performance of this technology in medical use. FDA listings were obtained and ISO-BAC Medical Nonwovens were introduced to the market. After its release, Dow immediately started research and development programs, and after testing and reviewing all available antimicrobials, their technical assessment was unquestionable in its verification of the utility of the Dow Corning, now AEGIS® Antimicrobial over any other technology available.
The Microbial Shield®
The AEGIS shield is a unique chemical technology that can be applied to a material, making it anti-microbial active. The AEGIS Microbe Shield technology permanently bonds (polymerizes) with the substrate and will not leach or diminish overtime. The technology relies on the coating remaining affixed to the substrate – killing microorganisms as they contact the treated surface.
The AEGIS Microbe Shield is a permanent antimicrobial that, when applied properly only by trained applicators, becomes part of a new surface – a surface that is highly resistant to microbial attack. Unlike all other conventional antimicrobials, AEGIS does not off gas, leach, diffuse, migrate, volatilise, or otherwise leave the surface to which it has been applied. The result is an extraordinary safety and efficacy profile unmatched by other products. The incorporation of AEGIS Antimicrobial, and its remarkable surface modifying characteristics, has produced a new generation of air filtration products that can provide effective control of airborne microbes while eliminating the filter surface as a potential site for bacteria growth.
The following is reprinted from the Aegis® Asia web site (www.aegisasia.com) where the Aegis® Microbe Shield is utilized as a Defense Mechanism/ Forward Defense against Bird Flu H5N1:
“Aegis® antimicrobial is based on the active molecule quaternary ammonium, highly-effective proven broad spectrum microbicide molecule. Aegis® Antimicrobial is a non-volatizing, non-migrating material which utilizes a unique surface modifying technology to impart safe and lasting antimicrobial activity to treated surfaces. It is specifically registered with the Environmental Protection Agency for treatment of hard and soft surfaces (EPA No. 64881-3), making it safe to use on surfaces that can harbor pathogenic micro-organisms. SAFE TO HUMANS & THE ENVIRONMENT – Many biocides and leaching antimicrobial agents contain phenols, heavy metals, arsenic, mercury and silver which are not only harmful to micro-organisms, but can also be harmful to humans. AEGIS® is not a poison and is so safe to humans, that it is even used as a treatment on baby diapers to prevent “nappy rash”. AEGIS® is non-leaching. It is bonded to a treated surface, and does not leach or create an environment that promotes adaptive micro-oranisms. AEGIS® is anti-viral and anti-microbial. AEGIS® works 24 hours, 7 days a week.”
Frequently Asked Questions
How does the Aegis Antimicrobial technology work?
The AEGIS Microbe Shield is a reactive silane quaternary ammonium compound. When applied as a liquid to a host filter material the active ingredient in the AEGIS Antimicrobial forms a colorless, odorless, positively charge polymer coating which chemically bonds, virtually irremovable, to the treated surface. You could think of it as a layer of electrically charged swords. When a microorganism come in contact with the treated surface, the sword punctures the cell membrane and the electrical charge shocks the cell. Since nothing is transferred to the now dead cell, the Antimicrobial doesn’t lose strength the sword is ready for the next cell to contact it.
What are the differences between the AEGIS Microbe shield technology and other Antimicrobials on the market?
Conventional Antimicrobial products penetrate livings cells and kill by way of poisoning the organism. This poisoning technology is applied to a host media where it slowly leaches out creating a “killing field or zone” around the surface into which targeted microorganisms pass. They are designed to act quickly and dissipate quickly in order to avoid adverse effects to humans and animals due to their toxic ingredients. The AEGIS Antimicrobial takes a totally unique approach. It provides an effective initial microbial kill when applied, like the conventional methods, but it also provides long-term control of growth on treated surfaces for the life of that surface. The surface itself is modified to make it anti-microbially active.
How long does the treatment last?
Since the cured antimicrobial is non-volatile, insoluble and non-leaching, the treatment should last for the life of the treated surface. Effective levels of the technology do not diminish overtime even after repeated rinsing. (Abrasive or caustic (pH>10.5) solutions will shorten the effective life of the AEGIS Microbe Shield)
Is the AEGIS Microbe Shield Toxic?
No. It does not volatilize, dissipate, or leach onto other surfaces or into the environment. The AEGIS Microbe shield is non-biodegradable. Its chemistry polymerizes where it is applied and forms a permanent bond that lasts for the life of the treated surface.
How do you dispose of materials treated with the AEGIS Microbe Shield?
New material treated with the AEGIS is totally safe, non-hazardous and can be disposed of in a municipal landfill.