Coronavirus particles can travel up to 8 metres, persist in air for hours, claims US scientist
New Delhi | Jagran News Desk: A new research regarding coronavirus suggests that gas cloud particles from cough or sneeze may help viruses travel up to 8 metres (up to 27 feet) in the air. Published in the American Medical Association, the study said that current guidelines by the World Health Organisation (WHO), and the United States Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) are based on outdated models from the 1930s on how sneeze, cough and cough are spread.
The study was conducted by an MIT professor Lydia Bourouiba has warned that droplets of all sizes can travel up to 27 feet or 8 metres, carrying the pathogen.
According to Lydia, the current guidelines are based on arbitrary assumptions of drop size, "overly simplified" and "may limit the effectiveness of the proposed interventions" against the pandemic. She explained that old guidelines assume droplets to be one of two categories, small or large, taking short-range semi-ballisic trajectories when a person exhales, coughs or sneezes.
Based on recent discoveries, she said that coughs and sneezes are made up of puff cloud that carries ambient air, transporting within its clusters of droplets of wide range of sizes. The MIT scientist warned that the puff cloud, with ambient air can offer droplet moisture and warmth that can prevent it from environment and evaporation.
Lydia who has researched the dynamics of sneezes and coughs for years added that the droplets settle along the trajectory of sneeze or cough contaminating surfaces, with their residue staying suspended in air for hours.
"Even when maximum containment policies were enforced, the rapid international spread of COVID-19 suggests that using arbitrary droplet size cutoffs may not accurately reflect what actually occurs with respiratory emissions, possibly contributing to the ineffectiveness of some procedures used to limit the spread of respiratory disease," Bourouiba wrote in the study.
(with PTI inputs)
Posted By: James