Bhubaneswar: Outbreaks of respiratory diseases, such as influenza, SARS, MERS and now the novel coronavirus (SARS-CoV-2), have taken a significant toll on human populations worldwide. With ever-increasing commutes performed by urban populations, driving in an enclosed car cabin with passengers presents a risk of airborne disease transmission.
Ashimanshu Das, a BTech student hailing from NIT Rourkela (Odisha) pursuing his doctorate degree in Fluids and Thermal Sciences in Brown University of USA have co-authored a study with Varghese Mathai, (Postdoctoral researcher) Jeffrey Bailey, M.D PhD, Associate Professor, Department of Pathology and Laboratory Medicine, and Kenny Breuer, Professor of Ecology and Evolutionary Biology.
They have used numerical simulations to quantify the air flow patterns inside a model car geometry, for a variety of ventilation configurations. In particular, they have identified how the micro-climate of the car interior affects the transport of a contaminant between occupants in different seats of the car cabin.
Their findings reveal the complex fluid dynamics at play during everyday commutes in cars, and non-intuitive ways in which open windows can enhance or suppress airborne
Ashimanshu Das and Varghese Mathai are joint first authors who have equally contributed to the work.