Half a croissant, on a plate, with a sign in front of it saying '50c'
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Masks being in low supply, just use nasal tubes and connect to air filters of various kinds that are not in low supply.
  [vote for,

Nasal cannulae had long been used for delivery of supplementary oxygen. However, making them airtight, with a slightly larger diameter, would make them usable for breathing air from where it's clean. For example, the air in someone's bag, or a filter hung on the neck like a neckless.

Then, design the connectors with all kind of existing air filters. This may be interesting for tube manufacturers, and the manufacturers of existing HEPA filters of various different form factors, for which the connectors could be designed, and this way, new demand for their production created.

Inyuki, Apr 01 2020

CPAP masks https://www.cheapcp...sks-quieter-others/
This one most similar. The hypothesis of Airstraws is that these could be used without positive pressure pump, and easily mass-produced. [Inyuki, Apr 01 2020]


       You need positive pressure for cannulae to function properly, so you'll need a pump.
8th of 7, Apr 01 2020

       Well, that depends on the diameters of the tubing... So, this would come in two versions -- large diameter for manual breathing (ugly, but cheaper), and small diameter, with a positive pressure battery-powered pump.
Inyuki, Apr 01 2020

       If the tubing is big enough to seal tightly it will be very uncomfortable. Such designs were investigated during WW1 for respirators, and rejected in favour of a nose clip and mouthpiece; it would have made issuing orders much easier if breathing through the nose.
8th of 7, Apr 01 2020

       // Such designs were investigated during WW1 for respirators, and rejected in favour of a nose clip and mouthpiece   

       Perhaps they should be reassessed with new soft and adaptive materials of the 21st century. Cannulae shoud be larger than 1 cm in diameter to fit tightly to the nostrils.   

       // would have made issuing orders much easier if breathing through the nose   

       I do imagine. :)
Inyuki, Apr 01 2020

       // to fit tightly to the nostrils //   

       Hence the problem. Anything that fits tightly, no matter what its conformal characteristics, rapidly becomes uncomfortable, and the skin inside the nostrils is not adapted to contact, unlike the lips. While sensetive, the lips are well adapted to cope with pressure and mild abrasion.   

       The military of many nations have repeatedly investigated this as it offers a solution to a major problem. They're still investigating. They're still getting nowhere without positive pressure systems. The cannula not only needs to seal; it needs to seal absolutely reliably under negative pressure. Anything less than that is useless.
8th of 7, Apr 01 2020

       Fair enough. But think of this -- drill two holes in a tube, and wrap the tube around the head below the nose, above the ears, connecting at the back of the head. Perhaps the holes can simply be at the surface of the bottom of the nose, without having to have any tubes getting inside the nostrils. As long as the tensile pressure holds the tube surface at the nose surface, the contact is air-tight.
Inyuki, Apr 01 2020

       You're describing a CPAP mask (Baked and WKTE) and they need positive pressure, though for different reasons.   

       But unless you protect the mouth too, inhaling pathogens is inevitable.
8th of 7, Apr 01 2020

       Well, if I Google for CPAP masks, most designs are with much more complex way of securing the tube to nose. I found most similar one, and linked, which actually, does look like what I am proposing here, due to the simplicity -- cutting tubes, and securing on the head.   

       The hypothesis is that the tubes can be sufficiently large to not require positive pressure pump, making this easier to mass produce.   

       // But unless you protect the mouth too, inhaling pathogens is inevitable.   

       Most humans are able to close mouth voluntarily, which we would expect, or, otherwise, a pacifier would be required.
Inyuki, Apr 01 2020

       [Chairborne Hero], I'd give a bun for this observation so in the context of COVID-19 -- preventing others dispersing their sneezed of coughed material must be playing much greater role in the spread of COVID-19, and this idea is not a solution to that.   

       Although it would prevent from inhaling those droplets, which is one of the pathways for the infection.
Inyuki, Apr 01 2020

       To be fair, Covid is not mentioned anywhere in the original idea, [CH].   

       And given the author, a lack of understanding of the fundamental issues is a given.   

       A bone seems a little unfair ...
8th of 7, Apr 01 2020

       // Bone for a fundamental misunderstanding of why masks might be advisable for the anyone outside of medical profession.   

       We've talked about "Hand Sanitizer With Irritant Added" idea... It's not that. It's just thinking of the supply of masks, and what could replace them, well, not entirely, which I have to agree with.
Inyuki, Apr 01 2020

       // Now I *know* it's April 1! //   

       Well spotted. Normal service will be resumed at midnight.   

       Actually, not quite normal, as all the bile, venom and general snarkiness we would have dispensed today has been stored up and will be released in a surge of gratuitous unpleasantness as soon as practicable.   

       // For all of the reasons you have already and competently pointed out. //   

       ... which begs the question why you thought you needed to comment at all.
8th of 7, Apr 01 2020

       Which brings me back to the "pacifier" idea...
Inyuki, Apr 01 2020

       For [CH] ? Yes, of course. That, and a bib to catch the dribble ...   

       What with those, and the ... adult incontinence garments ... and the hearing aids, and the spectacles, he's getting more and more Borg-like every day.   

       But not in a good way <Sniggering/>
8th of 7, Apr 01 2020

       Problem is that, now that we understand CHairborne transmission, lengthening the incubation period and upping the mortality rates could be rather trivial, and my worst nightmares are just a step away.
Inyuki, Apr 01 2020

       Not even that far...   

       <Taps [Inyuki] on shoulder/>   

       <Menacing whisper>   

       "We're behind you... "   

       </Menacing whisper>
8th of 7, Apr 01 2020


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