Many viral and bacterial infections are airborne (such as COVID and Influenza), meaning they spread via pathogen-laden particles (aerosols and droplets) exhaled by an infected person when breathing, talking, coughing, or sneezing. In fact, the airborne transmission of respiratory pathogens is recognized as a main route of transmission of SARS-COV-2, influenza, tuberculosis, the common cold, and other respiratory infections. This is especially important for confined indoor spaces with multiple individuals, such as vehicles – including vans, aircraft, trains, buses, etc. - where people are densely packed into a relatively small indoor space and all breathe the same air.
Air-Clenz™ (www.Air-Clenz.com) was invented, patented, and developed for vehicles of all types. Air-Clenz™ quickly captures and cleans an infected passenger’s exhaled breath – in five seconds or less – at a level 99.97% free of COVID and other pathogens. Once the air is cleaned it can be exhausted from the vehicle or be circulated back into the vehicle’s indoor air environment. Air-Clenz™ can be integrated into vehicle seats or attached to the back of a seat to quickly capture the exhaled air of a passenger sitting directly behind the seat.
Airlines state the air in their aircraft cabins is replaced every two to three minutes, while scientists and medical professionals now know it takes as little as ten seconds to catch certain forms of COVID. Joint research with the University of New Mexico Department of Mechanical Engineering (UNM) shows that within 20 – 50 seconds of an infected passenger’s cough the damage is largely done in terms of cross contamination to other passengers. This is most problematic when combining the recent surge of the BA.5 variant with passengers not wearing face masks while traveling.
The efficacy of Air-Clenz™ technology was proven by UNM through computational fluid dynamics (CFD) simulations of a 60-passenger coach class section of a Boeing 737-800 cabin with two contagious, infected passengers who boarded the aircraft. The Air-Clenz™ technology integrated in the back of each seat significantly reduced the in-flight spread of infectious diseases. Air-Clenz™ achieved a 90% reduction in cross-infection compared to the current Boeing 737-800 cabin ventilation system.
The results of the UNM study strongly indicates that the Air-Clenz™ technology is a viable solution for the pressing challenge of significantly reducing in-flight transmitted infections that occur with air travelers, flight attendants, and crew. Air-Clenz™ technology can also be applied in trains, busses, automobiles, and other vehicles. The Air-Clenz™ technology includes off the shelf components assembled in a novel manner. An Air-Clenz™ unit for a seat back is light weight (less than 2 pounds), quiet (30 dB or less), highly effective (99.97%), and affordable.
Visual illustration 1: Illustration of cabin airflow and exhaled air flow in Air-Clenz™ equipped aircraft cabin
Visual illustration 2: CFD vector analysis of airflow in Air-Clenz™ equipped aircraft cabin
Visual illustration 3: Spatial distribution of exhaled aerosols in cabin with standard ventilation and cabin with Air-Clenz™ ventilation
Video: Exhaled cough aerosols in cabin with standard ventilation and cabin with Air-Clenz™ ventilation