How it started
Filtertex is a response to the crisis by Estonian startup Gelatex Technologies (www.gelatex.com). When the days were still normal, we developed an eco-friendly leather-like textile but switched the main focus now on making filter material for medical masks.
As we all know, there is lack of medical masks now everywhere, mainly because of shortage of filtering material that would block over 95% of nanoparticles but still would be breathable. Existing nanofiber production technologies are slow, require high voltages or are expensive and not so easily scalable. We even learned that in Estonia and many other countries there are a lot of sewing companies who are ready to start producing medical masks but there is just no material available!
How we solve it
We at Gelatex Technologies have developed an easily scalable efficient method to produce nanofibrous nonwoven material in a continuous line. Before we only used it to make gelatin nanofibers, but just in a few weeks, we managed to test it with other polymers that are suitable for respirators and masks. We have the initial batches of the material done now with SAN polymer and the fiber size is 0.7-2 µm. We are waiting now to get the tests done how well it performs to block nanoparticles. If everything works then with our existing small pilot production in Tallinn, Estonia we could produce material for up to 6000 masks per day.
Plans for the hackathon
During the hackathon, we aim to define the business strategy, create awareness and get a full understanding of the next steps needed and potential impact.
Gelatex Technologies original team has 6 people with experience in mechanical engineering, machine building, materials science, chemistry, marketing, textiles, project management and business development. We are looking for people to join to help with following:
- creative people to help to figure out name for the new product
- graphic designer to help with visuals
- someone to make a simple website for this project
- people who know about filtration, masks, related certifications and production requirements
- connections to build sales or other cool enthusiasts who think that could help.
- Getting tests done + certificates from lab in Poland
- Making our production machine working autonomously 24/7.
- Supplying raw material, starting production
- Finding customers/mask manufacturing partners in Estonia
- Further development & scaling abroad?