Today, humanity has once again been defenseless against the threat of viruses. Despite the fact that for many of us this was unexpected, Tesla CEO Elon Musk, understanding what the future holds for us, created a product that would protect us from this threat.
When Tesla released the Model X in 2015, Musk announced that the car would have a Biological Weapon Defense Mode. After that, the air conditioning control panels of Model S and Model X were supplemented with a button with the corresponding icon.
As our @Tesmanian_com blog reported Tesla Model S and X Hospital-Grade HEPA Filters May Help Prevent Coronavirus Infections on Jan 27: https://t.co/XX4nGPQY9U— Vincent (@vincent13031925) February 3, 2020
A Tesla owner in China recently shared a clip about how $TSLA HEPA system helps during the critical period @elonmusk pic.twitter.com/I0iRzwFf4I
In 2015 and 2016, China suffered from a haze problem, so people began to pay more and more attention to air quality in cars. California air quality is also a problem, and the Tesla Biological Weapon Defense Mode is actually designed to clean the air in a car, and its principle is very simple: it uses a HEPA filter for air conditioning.
HEPA is a high-performance molecular air filter whose efficiency can reach more than 99.97%, which allows to effectively filter pollutants such as smoke, dust and bacteria. The stronger the filterability, the smaller the air intake per unit area. To ensure adequate air supply, the Tesla HEPA filter element is very large.
The filter that Mask holds is a regular air conditioner filter, and the filter below is a Model X HEPA filter.
In a Tesla test, the HEPA air filtration system completed air purification in the Model X cab in less than two minutes, lowering the PM 2.5 pollution index from 1000 to an extremely low level (below the reference level).
HEPA conditioning filters have the best filtering effect on particles with a diameter of 0.5 micrometer and below 0.1 micrometer, and the diameter of the viruses is usually within 0.1 micrometer. According to Dr. Mariea Snell, Assistant Director of the Online Doctor of Nursing Program at Maryville University, the size of COVID-19 is approximately 0.125 microns.
This means that HEPA conditioning filters can actually filter the virus, which is now spreading around the world.
Tesla Model X and Model S after 2016 are equipped with HEPA air conditioning filters. But, the currently popular Model 3 doesn't have such a filter for air conditioning, as it has a much smaller size than older models.
Model 3 owners can install these filters themselves, but for this they will need to buy and install them on their own.
After Tesla used HEPA filters for air conditioning, other car companies didn't follow this example. However, after the outbreak of the coronavirus, some car companies announced the development of “antivirus cars.”
On February 17, the Geely car-grade CN95 composite air conditioner filter was pilot-produced, which will be the first to be assembled and used on their “anti-epidemic vehicles”.
The new Geely filter uses new types of filter media with smaller pore sizes, such as activated carbon, high-performance non-woven materials and multilayer composite materials. But it has a weaker filtering ability than the HEPA air conditioning filter element, and doesn't comply with the N95 standard. It has limited virus protection, but can filter drops that carry viruses.
From this point of view, the development of these automobile companies have a certain filtering function. Theoretically, you can remove the mask in the car without the risk of infecting passengers if the filter cleans the air in the car for a long time. However, if you travel short distances in urban areas, it is recommended that you always wear a mask because the air is more complex and it takes some time for the air conditioner filter to work.
So, Tesla came up with Biological Weapon Defense Mode in 2015, and which is now very useful and necessary. Thanks to HEPA filters, the company's cars protect the life and health of you and your loved ones, while none of the other cars can provide this. Tesla done with care for you.
Featured image: Carthrottle
About the Author
Eva Fox joined Tesmanian in 2019 to cover breaking news as an automotive journalist. The main topics that she covers are clean energy and electric vehicles. As a journalist, Eva is specialized in Tesla and topics related to the work and development of the company.