The speed at which viruses such as SARS-CoV-2 spread can be significantly slowed down by interrupting transmission chains. According to current knowledge, SARS-CoV-2 is transmitted mainly by droplet infection. The greatest danger is posed by virus‑containing aerosol clouds, i.e. tiny droplets suspended in the air.
This is where the "Virus Grill" project comes in, which is being developed by Fraunhofer IFAM in Dresden: The thermal inactivation of viruses by heating the air is intended to reduce the probability of infection via aerosols. For this purpose, the germ-bearing ambient air is sucked in and heated in a device called "Virus Grill" before the hygienized air is then re-cooled and released back into the environment.
The disinfection of the air is to be achieved by using and combining various technologies. At Fraunhofer IGB, aerosol clouds of SARS-CoV-2 surrogate viruses are simulated and generated to test the functionality of the “Virus Grill” by analyzing the active vs. inactive viruses.
Virus Grill is a subproject of the “AVATOR – Anti-Virus Aero-sol: Testing, Operation, Reduction“ project coordinated by Fraunhofer IBP and funded in the “Fraunhofer vs. Corona“ program. In addition to technologies for purifying the indoor air, AVATOR investigates the spread of aerosols and derives hygiene concepts for different scenarios. The developments will ultimately be tested in laboratory environments and then validated in real environments.
Especially educational institutions, hospitals, care facilities, hotels, and other forms of accommodation, railway and aircraft operators, manufacturing companies and office-based firms will receive answers with regard to hygiene issues as well as practical solutions to prevent the spread of aerosol infections.