Photo by Hans Reniers on Unsplash

Clearing the Mist

Clearing the Mist: From Fundamental Investigations of Aerosol Filtration and Capture Towards Improved Indoor Ventilation Strategies

Maaike Sikkink (PhD Candidate), Rob Lammertink (promotor), Jeff Wood (supervisor)

Duration: 2023 – 2027

FundingMIST – Mitigation Strategies for Airborne Infection Control funded by NWO Perspectief 2020/2021 P20-35

During the COVID-19 pandemic, it became clear that long-distance airborne transmission could be the dominant route for the spreading of the virus. Reduction of the risk of contamination can be done by limiting the concentration of pathogens in the air. Fundamental knowledge of the transport mechanisms of aerosols inside air filters is important for the design of effective and efficient ventilation systems or masks.

Key words
Covid-19, Airborne Transmission, Aerosols, Fibrous Filters, Transport Mechanisms, Concentration Profile

Technological challenges
The focus of this research will be on the removal and inactivation of aerosols from the air with different types of filters like fibrous filters, liquid-infused fiber filters and screen filters. The behavior of aerosols within these filters is often treated as a ‘black-box’ (macroscale) or explained by looking at one single fiber (microscale). The challenge is to see what happens within the two extremes and visualize the overall transport mechanism inside these filters.  

Research goals
The goal is to experimentally measure the aerosol concentration profile inside geometries that mimic different type of filters. The influence of particle adherence will be investigated by controlling the surface characteristics and process conditions.