DAEJEON, June 10 (Korea Bizwire) — With the surge in sales of protective masks following the coronavirus outbreak, patents for technology designed to prevent these masks from causing environmental damage also jumped in number last year.
The Korean Intellectual Property Office reported that 112 patents were submitted last year in relation to eco-friendly mask technologies, surpassing the yearly average of one to 13 patents in previous years.
Over the last 10 years (2011 to 2020), a total of 143 patents have been submitted in relation to the eco-friendliness of protective masks.
Sorted by types of technology, 104 patents dealt with multiple-use protective masks (73 percent), 21 patents with collection and disposal of used masks (15 percent), 14 patents with biodegradable material (10 percent), and four patents with recycling used masks (3 percent).
With the recent trend of combining eco-friendly advanced materials and resource circulation with protective masks, efforts to prevent environmental damage are expected to accelerate.
Patent sources included private individuals (71.3 percent), enterprises (27.3 percent), and universities and research institutions (1.4 percent).
The fact that the majority of patent applicants were individuals is assumed to have resulted from the invididual experience of wearing a mask every day.
M. H. Lee (email@example.com)