The haze usually comes in the 3rd quarter of the year but due to seasonal weather changes, it has been choking us as early as March. Actually, ’haze’ is an euphemism which should be correctly be termed ‘smog’ for it contains sinister toxic smoke and fine microscopic carbonized dust particles which are detrimental to health. This phenomenon is caused by deliberate forest fires in Indonesia, these irresponsible acts affect the economies and welfare of neighbouring countries, causing flight cancellations, flight delays, health complications and not to mention extensive ecological impacts to our environment.
With Singapore engulfed by haze, the newly launched AIR + Smart Mask has taken Singapore by storm (and rightly so). They are the brainchild of InnoSparks, an ST Engineering subsidiary.
Why is the AIR+ Smart Mask taking Singapore by storm? Quite simply, because it is designed to fit almost everyone (even for children as young as 7 years old). It is the world’s first N95 certified respiratory mask which comes in 3 sizes to offer advanced means of protection against haze, volcanic ash and other air-borne viruses / particles. We should not underestimate the need for a good mask because even though the haze seems to have abated these past few days, the PM2.5 Air Quality Index still registers hovers between 150 to 170 – in the unhealthy range.
Mr. Fong Saik Hay, Chief Technology Officer of ST Engineering, explaining rationale behind the innovation of the AIR+ Smart Masks:
A good protective mask would help us with the problems (caused by haze) but because we haven’t been able to find one with the level of comfort and easy-breathing quality we desired, so we set out to create it for our world.
Taking a fresh look at existing masks and their limitations, we focused our design on proper fit, and enhanced comfort for prolonged use. To do so, we applied our engineering and technical skill sets to challenge the status quo and invented what we can confidently say is the next generation of respirators.”
Innovation #1: New Smart Masks give Superior Fit
Finally, an effective and affordable face mask that would fit children 7 years old and up. Through its painstaking process, the team at InnoSparks has come up with 3 differentiated sizes (of small, medium and large) to provide a superb fit for a broad age range for most typical Asian face profiles, even for young ones. To help wearers choose the right mask size with a proper fit, the engineers also designed a measurement gauge integrated into the product packaging.
To find your right size, simply hold up the measuring chart found at the side of the Smart Mask packaging to your face. Match the distance from your eye to the bottom of your chin and select the closest size indicated. Here’s a video showing how to wear the mask.
The sizes fit snugly even on children’s faces (Approx. 7 years and over)
Innovation #2: A Built-in Smart Valve
The engineers have deigned all masks to come with built-in Smart Valve to allow warm and humid air trapped within the mask to escape faster and easier, so that we can breathe cooler fresher air.
The Air+ Smart Mask, gives us protection from the haze comfortably.
Innovation #3: The AIR+ micro ventilator improves the effectiveness of the Smart Mask
Conventional masks seal the area around the wearer’s mouth and nose. After prolonged wear, perspiration and condensation from the trapped air would make wearers stuffy and uncomfortable. Talking while wearing the masks would just amplify the problem, with some even misting up our spectacles! Not so with the AIR+ Smart Mask.
The Smart Masks can be used with the optional AIR+ micro ventilator – a detachable, rechargeable and lightweight, square-shaped micro ventilator which eliminates the unpleasant build-up of heat, moisture and carbon dioxide inside a conventional mask. The AIR+, when used together with the Smart Mask, is able to reduce humidity inside the face mask by up to 40% and reduce temperature by up to 4°C! This makes prolonged usage more comfortable.
All about the AIR+ micro ventilator:
The Smart Mask, on its own, offers wearers adequate protection against airborne contaminants but when the AIR+ mirco ventilator is fitted to the Smart Mask, we will experience improved breathing comfort and cooler airflow over extended period of time.
The AIR+ micro ventilator is powered by a built-in rechargeable lithium-polymer battery for up to 2 hours continuous use. Once the battery is drained, we can easily re-charge via USB to a computer system or power adaptor. It is light-weight and fits onto any size of the Smart Mask.
The AIR+ is highly recommended for children, as it removes accumulated carbon dioxide that may result in giddiness or headache. It is designed to fit only the Smart Masks and not compatible with other N95 masks in the market.
The average shelf life of the AIR+ micro ventilator is up to 1000 battery hours. If used every day, it can be used for over a year.
Benefits of the AIR+ Smart Mask
The micro ventilator comes complete with a USB charger
- The Smart Mask’s ergonomic design helps to ensure the best fit and well-sealed protection for you and your child (7 years and up)
- Smart Masks come in 3 sizes to fit a range of small to large faces
- Fully adjustable straps provide better fit and flexibility with no messing up of your hairdo
- Plush cushions ensure complete seal without compromising comfort
- Innovative filter mesh structure makes the masks more breathable without compromising on the level of protection
- Flat-folding for convenient portability
- The Smart Mask can be used for up to 8 continuous hours and should be replaced when you find it hard to breathe.
- The AIR+ micro ventilator transforms the affordable disposable Smart Masks into advanced masks with better performance and greater comfort
- Most importantly, the AIR+ Smart Mask (Similar to existing N95 masks) filters at least 95% of all airborne particles, including haze, volcanic ash and small particles (PM2.5) down to 0.1- 0.3 microns.
Watch our video here.
While air purifiers have earned their standing in our homes, face masks of all shapes and sizes have also gradually claimed its spot in our office drawers, handbags, schoolbags and when the haze reaches unhealthy levels, on our faces so that we can go about our everyday lives as normally much as possible. The AIR+Smart Mask is everything we are looking for in a protective mask which offers us peace of mind against pandemics and airborne threats to our family.
The Smart Masks are priced at S$7.20 per box (3 masks in each box) and the AIR+ micro ventilator is at S$29.90 each. Get yours today at all Watsons, Guardian and Unity Pharmacies islandwide!
Thanks to our sponsor, we have 5 sets of AIR+ Smart Masks to be given away to 5 readers (1 set per household; each set comes in 3 sizes: S, M and L plus 1 AIR+ micro ventilator). To participate, simply do the following:
This giveaway ends on 22 September 2015, 11.59pm and is open to readers in Singapore. The winner will be contacted using the contact particulars provided when entering this draw and will have 24 hours to respond, failing which a new winner will be drawn. All incomplete and unverified entries will be disqualified. All entries will be verified before the winners are announced. To be fair to our sponsors, please note that all fake Facebook accounts (e.g. accounts set up purely to take part in contests with no or very few real friends) will be disqualified. All the best!