The National Institute for Occupational Safety and Health (NIOSH) has organized a Respirator Fit Evaluation Challenge. The goal of this crowdsourcing competition is to find new ways to improve respirator fit testing. There is $350,000 in total prize money.
To participate in the first phase of the competition, individuals or companies must submit by May 1 a concept paper that describes how to improve fit testing. Up to 20 of these papers could win $5,000 and be invited to continue to Phase 2 of the competition.
People and respirators come in a variety of shapes and sizes. Given the wide use of respirators and sporadic fit testing, it is important to find easier and more immediate ways for people to get feedback on whether their respirator is correctly fitted and working properly. This is the reason for the NIOSH competition.