We’re developing respirators with unique filter media technology that are highly effective and comfortable to wear. The proprietary 3M Cool Flow Valve is designed to release your hot, humid exhaled breath quickly, helping to prevent an unpleasant build up of exhaled air inside the facepiece – a cause of discomfort to respirator wearers.
The colors in the thermal images below show the change in surface temperature of the respirators as the model inhales and exhales.
Inhalation is the cooler part of the cycle; with both valved and unvalved respirators, the 3M filter media facilitates an easy draw of cooler external air.
As the wearer inhales, air is pulled through the respirator and surface temperature decreases. The valve's plastic cover, because of the material composition, retains some of the heat.
Exhalation: As the wearer exhales the respirator is filled with warm, moist air. The cooler thermal imaging shades of the picture on the right indicate how the respirator fitted with the Cool Flow valve expels the breath, together with its natural heat, more rapidly.
This benefit is ideal for long periods of wear, especially when work is physically demanding and likely to cause heavy breathing.
3M has a wide range of NIOSH 42 CFR 84 approved filtering facepiece respirators, both unvalved and valved.