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Postgraduate Thesis: Expiratory droplet exposure between individuals in a ventilated room
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TitleExpiratory droplet exposure between individuals in a ventilated room
 
AuthorsLiu, Li
刘荔
 
Issue Date2011
 
PublisherThe University of Hong Kong (Pokfulam, Hong Kong)
 
AbstractInterpersonal transport of expiratory droplets and droplet nuclei constitutes a prerequisite for the transmission of pathogens as well as the transmission of respiratory diseases. This study modeled the physical process of interpersonal transport of droplets and droplet nuclei in a ventilated room. The impacts of a number of parameters in three length scales and three corresponding physical processes were analyzed, including dispersion and evaporation of droplets/droplet nuclei at 1 to 100 μm, human exhalation flows and body plumes at 0.1 to 1 m, and the indoor environment at 1 to 10 m. The strong hygroscopicity of the solutes in the droplet is capable of keeping the droplet with an equilibrium size in humid air, larger than that of a dried particle. Mathematical models were developed to predict the droplet nucleus size in both dry air and humid air, by simplifying the composition of one expiratory droplet to NaCl solution and suspended spherical particles. For a droplet with an initial diameter of 100 μm, initial NaCl concentration of 0.9%, and initial solids ratio of 1.8%, the droplet nucleus size was estimated to be 42 μm in an ambient relative humidity of 90% (25°C), which is 30% larger than it was in a relative humidity of 30% (25°C). A numerical model was also developed to predict droplet evaporation and dispersion in a constant turbulent buoyant jet. Droplets with initial sizes larger than 80 μm were predicted to deposit on the floor at a distance of ~1.25 m (~1.7 m for 60 μm) away from the mouth, while droplets with initial sizes less than 40 μm travelled to the end of the jet. A series of experiments was conducted to assess the characteristics of human exhalation airflows and thermal plume, using a full-scale test room and a breathing thermal manikin. The impacts of the ventilation system were illustrated by comparing the velocity distribution of the exhalation airflows and airflows induced by thermal plume. Further experiments employing two breathing thermal manikins were carried out to evaluate the interpersonal transport of the expiratory contaminants that were simulated by tracer gas. When the two manikins with the same heights were standing face to face at a mutual distance of 0.8 m, the exhalation airflows from the mouth of the source manikin could directly travel into the breathing region of the susceptible manikin, resulting in a high exposure. The high exposure decreased sharply with an increase in the mutual distance from 0.5 m to 1.0 m. Between 1.0 m to 3.0 m, the exposure by the susceptible manikin remained at a low and constant level. Numerical simulations considering droplet evaporation and droplet nucleus sizes were carried out; and the impacts of the parameters of droplet initial size, humidity, vicinity, ventilation conditions and synchronization of exhalation were evaluated. Fine droplets and droplet nuclei were predicted to travel toward the upper part of the test room, whereas large droplets tend to be deposited on the floor. With a high relative humidity, 95%, most of the droplets were deposited on the floor within 16 seconds. Meanwhile, all of the droplets evaporated to droplet nuclei and remained suspended in the air when the relative humidity was 35%. Mixing ventilation that supplied fresh air with a ventilation rate of 5.6 h-1 resulted in drafts and strong turbulence, which made droplets and droplet nuclei dispersed in the room. The average vertical position was higher than that when the ventilation rate was 3.0 h-1. Displacement ventilation led to the vertical temperature stratification in the room. The vertical temperature gradient could neutralize the buoyancy force and weaken body plumes and the vertical dispersion of droplets and droplet nuclei. The inhalation of the droplets and droplet nuclei by the susceptible person and the deposition of the droplets and droplet nuclei on the body surface of the susceptible person were investigated at mutual distances of 0.5, 1.0, 1.5 and 3.0 m. For one breath from the source person, 1,600 droplets were released. Three and 9 droplet nuclei were inhaled by the susceptible person at a mutual distance of 0.5 and 1.0 m, respectively. No droplet nuclei were inhaled at 1.5 and 3.0 m.
 
AdvisorsLi, Y
 
DegreeDoctor of Philosophy
 
SubjectDrops - Mathematical models.
Atomization - Mathematical models.
Airborne infection - Mathematical models.
 
Dept/ProgramMechanical Engineering
 
DOIhttp://dx.doi.org/10.5353/th_b4724624
 
DC FieldValue
dc.contributor.advisorLi, Y
 
dc.contributor.authorLiu, Li
 
dc.contributor.author刘荔
 
dc.date.hkucongregation2012
 
dc.date.issued2011
 
dc.description.abstractInterpersonal transport of expiratory droplets and droplet nuclei constitutes a prerequisite for the transmission of pathogens as well as the transmission of respiratory diseases. This study modeled the physical process of interpersonal transport of droplets and droplet nuclei in a ventilated room. The impacts of a number of parameters in three length scales and three corresponding physical processes were analyzed, including dispersion and evaporation of droplets/droplet nuclei at 1 to 100 μm, human exhalation flows and body plumes at 0.1 to 1 m, and the indoor environment at 1 to 10 m. The strong hygroscopicity of the solutes in the droplet is capable of keeping the droplet with an equilibrium size in humid air, larger than that of a dried particle. Mathematical models were developed to predict the droplet nucleus size in both dry air and humid air, by simplifying the composition of one expiratory droplet to NaCl solution and suspended spherical particles. For a droplet with an initial diameter of 100 μm, initial NaCl concentration of 0.9%, and initial solids ratio of 1.8%, the droplet nucleus size was estimated to be 42 μm in an ambient relative humidity of 90% (25°C), which is 30% larger than it was in a relative humidity of 30% (25°C). A numerical model was also developed to predict droplet evaporation and dispersion in a constant turbulent buoyant jet. Droplets with initial sizes larger than 80 μm were predicted to deposit on the floor at a distance of ~1.25 m (~1.7 m for 60 μm) away from the mouth, while droplets with initial sizes less than 40 μm travelled to the end of the jet. A series of experiments was conducted to assess the characteristics of human exhalation airflows and thermal plume, using a full-scale test room and a breathing thermal manikin. The impacts of the ventilation system were illustrated by comparing the velocity distribution of the exhalation airflows and airflows induced by thermal plume. Further experiments employing two breathing thermal manikins were carried out to evaluate the interpersonal transport of the expiratory contaminants that were simulated by tracer gas. When the two manikins with the same heights were standing face to face at a mutual distance of 0.8 m, the exhalation airflows from the mouth of the source manikin could directly travel into the breathing region of the susceptible manikin, resulting in a high exposure. The high exposure decreased sharply with an increase in the mutual distance from 0.5 m to 1.0 m. Between 1.0 m to 3.0 m, the exposure by the susceptible manikin remained at a low and constant level. Numerical simulations considering droplet evaporation and droplet nucleus sizes were carried out; and the impacts of the parameters of droplet initial size, humidity, vicinity, ventilation conditions and synchronization of exhalation were evaluated. Fine droplets and droplet nuclei were predicted to travel toward the upper part of the test room, whereas large droplets tend to be deposited on the floor. With a high relative humidity, 95%, most of the droplets were deposited on the floor within 16 seconds. Meanwhile, all of the droplets evaporated to droplet nuclei and remained suspended in the air when the relative humidity was 35%. Mixing ventilation that supplied fresh air with a ventilation rate of 5.6 h-1 resulted in drafts and strong turbulence, which made droplets and droplet nuclei dispersed in the room. The average vertical position was higher than that when the ventilation rate was 3.0 h-1. Displacement ventilation led to the vertical temperature stratification in the room. The vertical temperature gradient could neutralize the buoyancy force and weaken body plumes and the vertical dispersion of droplets and droplet nuclei. The inhalation of the droplets and droplet nuclei by the susceptible person and the deposition of the droplets and droplet nuclei on the body surface of the susceptible person were investigated at mutual distances of 0.5, 1.0, 1.5 and 3.0 m. For one breath from the source person, 1,600 droplets were released. Three and 9 droplet nuclei were inhaled by the susceptible person at a mutual distance of 0.5 and 1.0 m, respectively. No droplet nuclei were inhaled at 1.5 and 3.0 m.
 
dc.description.naturepublished_or_final_version
 
dc.description.thesisdisciplineMechanical Engineering
 
dc.description.thesisleveldoctoral
 
dc.description.thesisnameDoctor of Philosophy
 
dc.identifier.doihttp://dx.doi.org/10.5353/th_b4724624
 
dc.identifier.hkulb4724624
 
dc.languageeng
 
dc.publisherThe University of Hong Kong (Pokfulam, Hong Kong)
 
dc.relation.ispartofHKU Theses Online (HKUTO)
 
dc.rightsThe author retains all proprietary rights, (such as patent rights) and the right to use in future works.
 
dc.rightsCreative Commons: Attribution 3.0 Hong Kong License
 
dc.source.urihttp://hub.hku.hk/bib/B47246248
 
dc.subject.lcshDrops - Mathematical models.
 
dc.subject.lcshAtomization - Mathematical models.
 
dc.subject.lcshAirborne infection - Mathematical models.
 
dc.titleExpiratory droplet exposure between individuals in a ventilated room
 
dc.typePG_Thesis
 
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<contributor.author>Liu, Li</contributor.author>
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<description.abstract>&#65279;Interpersonal transport of expiratory droplets and droplet nuclei constitutes a prerequisite for the transmission of pathogens as well as the transmission of respiratory diseases. This study modeled the physical process of interpersonal transport of droplets and droplet nuclei in a ventilated room. The impacts of a number of parameters in three length scales and three corresponding physical processes were analyzed, including dispersion and evaporation of droplets/droplet nuclei at 1 to 100 &#956;m, human exhalation flows and body plumes at 0.1 to 1 m, and the indoor environment at 1 to 10 m. 



The strong hygroscopicity of the solutes in the droplet is capable of keeping the droplet with an equilibrium size in humid air, larger than that of a dried particle. Mathematical models were developed to predict the droplet nucleus size in both dry air and humid air, by simplifying the composition of one expiratory droplet to NaCl solution and suspended spherical particles. For a droplet with an initial diameter of 100 &#956;m, initial NaCl concentration of 0.9%, and initial solids ratio of 1.8%, the droplet nucleus size was estimated to be 42 &#956;m in an ambient relative humidity of 90% (25&#176;C), which is 30% larger than it was in a relative humidity of 30% (25&#176;C). A numerical model was also developed to predict droplet evaporation and dispersion in a constant turbulent buoyant jet. Droplets with initial sizes larger than 80 &#956;m were predicted to deposit on the floor at a distance of ~1.25 m (~1.7 m for 60 &#956;m) away from the mouth, while droplets with initial sizes less than 40 &#956;m travelled to the end of the jet. 



A series of experiments was conducted to assess the characteristics of human exhalation airflows and thermal plume, using a full-scale test room and a breathing thermal manikin. The impacts of the ventilation system were illustrated by comparing the velocity distribution of the exhalation airflows and airflows induced by thermal plume. Further experiments employing two breathing thermal manikins were carried out to evaluate the interpersonal transport of the expiratory contaminants that were simulated by tracer gas. When the two manikins with the same heights were standing face to face at a mutual distance of 0.8 m, the exhalation airflows from the mouth of the source manikin could directly travel into the breathing region of the susceptible manikin, resulting in a high exposure. The high exposure decreased sharply with an increase in the mutual distance from 0.5 m to 1.0 m. Between 1.0 m to 3.0 m, the exposure by the susceptible manikin remained at a low and constant level. 



Numerical simulations considering droplet evaporation and droplet nucleus sizes were carried out; and the impacts of the parameters of droplet initial size, humidity, vicinity, ventilation conditions and synchronization of exhalation were evaluated. Fine droplets and droplet nuclei were predicted to travel toward the upper part of the test room, whereas large droplets tend to be deposited on the floor. With a high relative humidity, 95%, most of the droplets were deposited on the floor within 16 seconds. Meanwhile, all of the droplets evaporated to droplet nuclei and remained suspended in the air when the relative humidity was 35%. Mixing ventilation that supplied fresh air with a ventilation rate of 5.6 h-1 resulted in drafts and strong turbulence, which made droplets and droplet nuclei dispersed in the room. The average vertical position was higher than that when the ventilation rate was 3.0 h-1. Displacement ventilation led to the vertical temperature stratification in the room. The vertical temperature gradient could neutralize the buoyancy force and weaken body plumes and the vertical dispersion of droplets and droplet nuclei. 



The inhalation of the droplets and droplet nuclei by the susceptible person and the deposition of the droplets and droplet nuclei on the body surface of the susceptible person were investigated at mutual distances of 0.5, 1.0, 1.5 and 3.0 m. For one breath from the source person, 1,600 droplets were released. Three and 9 droplet nuclei were inhaled by the susceptible person at a mutual distance of 0.5 and 1.0 m, respectively. No droplet nuclei were inhaled at 1.5 and 3.0 m.</description.abstract>
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