Special Issue on COVID-19 Aerosol Drivers, Impacts and Mitigation (XIII)

Sreekanth Bathula1,2, Srinivasan Anand This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.1,3, Thaseem Thajudeen4, Yelia Shankaranarayana Mayya5, Probal Chaudhury2, Chaturvedi Shashank1,6 

1 Homi Bhabha National Institute, Mumbai-400 094, India
2 Radiation Safety Systems Division, Bhabha Atomic Research Centre, Mumbai-400 085, India
3 Health Physics Division, Bhabha Atomic Research Centre, Mumbai-400 085, India
4 School of Mechanical Sciences, Indian Institute of Technology Goa, Goa-403 401, India
5 Department of Chemical Engineering, Indian Institute of Technology Bombay, Mumbai-400 076, India
6 Institute for Plasma Research, Bhat Village, Gandhinagar-382428, India

Received: September 4, 2020
Revised: December 5, 2020
Accepted: January 9, 2021

 Copyright The Author(s). This is an open access article distributed under the terms of the Creative Commons Attribution License (CC BY 4.0), which permits unrestricted use, distribution, and reproduction in any medium, provided the original author and source are cited.

Download Citation: ||https://doi.org/10.4209/aaqr.200547  

Cite this article:

Bathula, S., Anand, S., Thajudeen, T., Mayya, Y.S., Chaudhury, P., Shashank, C. (2021). Survival of Expiratory Aerosols in a Room: Study Using a Bi-compartment and Bi-component Indoor Air Model. Aerosol Air Qual. Res. 21, 200547. https://doi.org/10.4209/aaqr.200547


  • A numerical model is developed to study the survival of infectious droplets in a room.
  • The model considers viral load, types of releases and wet droplet size distribution.
  • Effects of droplet evaporation, deposition, coagulation and ventilation are discussed.
  • The developed model is easily customizable for rooms of any given dimension.
  • The results will help in implementing the protective measures effectively.


Recent studies argue that inhalation of respiratory droplets in indoor environments is one of the significant routes of COVID-19 infection. In many cases, patients are isolated in hospitals and quarantine centers to minimize the spread. However, the rooms allocated to these patients are accessed by health care and sanitization workers a couple of times in a day. Since the expiratory activities release airborne droplets with certain viral load, there is a greater need to study the survival of these droplets in the room of a patient to control the exposure to the accessing people. A bi-compartment and bi-component numerical model is developed to study the survival of these droplets in a room, taking into consideration the deposition rates of the droplets and the ventilation rates in the room. The vital aspects related to the survival of the droplets, such as the effect of the severity of the infection, types of releases, size-dependent deposition and role of ventilation are discussed.

Keywords: COVID-19, Expiratory release, Severity of infection, Size-dependent deposition, Survival of droplets

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