Locals gather at Helsinki's Kaivopuisto on Friday (Image: Lehtikuva)

News in brief

RESEARCHERS AT AALTO UNIVERSITY, VTT, and the Finnish Meteorological Institute have conducted a series of simulations of the COVID-19 virus which has suggested that the contagious viral particles remain airborne for much longer than previously considered. 

The research examined how droplet particles left in the air from coughing and sneezing might linger and put people in the immediate vicinity at risk of infection. In the controlled simulations conducted by researchers, droplets remained suspended in the immediate vicinity of where they were expelled for several minutes before dissipating and spreading out. This means that, if somebody was to walk into the immediate area of where someone had previously coughed, they may be at risk of contracting the coronavirus. 

The researchers stressed that the results confirm the importance of avoiding crowded indoor areas as much as possible. 

"Someone infected by the coronavirus, can cough and walk away, but then leave behind extremely small aerosol particles carrying the coronavirus. These particles could then end up in the respiratory tract of others in the vicinity" says Aalto University Assistant Professor Ville Vuorinen

"Avoiding busy indoor areas reduces the risk of droplet infection while in close proximity to others, which, according to current information, is the main cause of coronavirus infection."


Adam Oliver Smith - HT

Image Credit: Lehtikuva