Dutch researchers have now been able to prove that tiny drops of 5 micrometres in diameter, such as those produced when speaking, can float in the air for up to 9 minutes… In order to contain the spread [of COVID-19] via the aerosol particles floating in the air, the researchers recommend not only continuing to wear masks but also, and above all, good indoor ventilation.
An Indo-German research team is now pointing out another aspect that has received little attention so far and could become particularly important in the next flu season: Indoor humidity.
Although, low humidity causes the droplets containing viruses to dry out more quickly, the survivability of the viruses still seems to remain high. The team concludes that other processes are more important for infection: “If the relative humidity of indoor air is below 40 percent, the particles emitted by infected people absorb less water, remain lighter, fly further through the room and are more likely to be inhaled by healthy people. In addition, dry air also makes the mucous membranes in our noses dry and more permeable to viruses,” summarizes Dr. Ajit Ahlawat.
The new findings are particularly important for the upcoming winter season in the northern hemisphere, when millions of people will be staying in heated rooms [which contributes to low humidity.]