Simulation shows how single droplet of coronavirus cough can spread in supermarket

WION Web Team New Delhi, Delhi, India Apr 10, 2020, 07.02 PM(IST)

Coronavirus pandemic Photograph:( IANS )

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The preliminary results showed that the tiny particles carrying the COVID1-19 can remain in the air longer than was originally thought

A new simulation released by researchers in Finland has claimed how droplets from a single cough in a supermarket can remain in the air for "several minutes" and travel across two aisles, potentially infecting people nearby with the coronavirus.

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Aalto University, the Finnish Meteorological Institute, VTT Technical Research Centre of Finland and the University of Helsinki studied how aerosolized particles expelled out from the respiratory tract when coughing, sneezing, or even talking, flow through the air.

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The preliminary results showed that the tiny particles carrying the COVID1-19 can remain in the air longer than was originally thought. 

The four research institutes each conducted the modeling independently with the same starting conditions, for a person coughing in an aisle between shelves, according to Aalto University.

"Someone infected by the coronavirus, can cough and walk away, but then leave behind extremely small aerosol particles carrying the coronavirus," Ville Vuorinen, Aalto University Assistant Professor said. 

"These particles could then end up in the respiratory tract of others in the vicinity."

"The (institute) recommends that you stay at home if you are unwell and that you maintain physical distance with everyone. The instructions also include coughing into your sleeve or a tissue and taking care of good hand hygiene," Jussi Sane, chief specialist at the Finnish Institute for Health and Welfare said. 

"Based on the modeling of the consortium, it is not yet possible to directly issue new recommendations. However, these results are an important part of the whole, and they should be compared with the data from real-life epidemic studies."