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Position paper of the Gesellschaft für Aerosolforschung on understanding the role of aerosol particles in SARS-CoV-2 infection

Gesellschaft für Aerosolforschung e.V.

Many studies have already shown that viruses can spread via aerosol particles. An aerosol is a mixture of air with solid or liquid particles dispersed in it. To understand the role of aerosol particles as a transmission path of SARS-CoV-2, knowledge of the different processes in an aerosol is therefore of particular importance. With this paper, GAeF would like to contribute to a better understanding of the term “aerosol” and the relevant aerosol processes. In the context of this paper only the essential basics will be discussed. For a deeper understanding of the partly complex processes, please refer to the literature mentioned at the end of the paper. The paper summarises a large number of studies on the formation of virus-laden aerosol particles and their spread. Based on this, it can be concluded that exhaled aerosol particles may play a prominent role in the spread of viruses in the corona pandemic. Finally, this paper discusses possible measures to reduce the spread of aerosol particles. The measures discussed are based on the current public debate including ventilation, air purifiers, HVAC systems and masks. Advice is given on the correct and sensible use of these measures.

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