How a sneeze easily spreads germs on a plane

How Does a Sneeze Travel on an Airplane?
How Does a Sneeze Travel on an Airplane?


Experts have created a video showing how a person sneezing in the middle of a plane can spread their germs throughout the entire cabin.

Software company ANSYS created the simulation which shows that people sitting next to and behind the person sneezing are most at risk of infection. According to the Daily Mail, germs can travel even further up to 50ft away.

As a passenger sneezes, the particles travel into the air and remain in a cloud above their head.

Speaking to Popular Science, Robert Harwood at ANSYS said: "The particles are coloured to show you where the stuff goes.

"Those droplets get picked up by the airflow and get transplanted all over the cabin. They actually spread quite far."

ANSYS is working with the Federal Aviation Administration and Purdue University to understand how germs spread throughout plane cabins.

Harwood added: "Every two minutes, there's a whole new set of air in the aircraft."

The direction people turn their fans and the movement of flight attendants impacts the air flow and how germs spread.

Harwood told Popular Science: "Airlines are constantly fighting this trade off: The more systems you put in the aircraft, the more weight you have and the more money it costs.

"They want the cheapest flight but also for their passengers to be healthy. Our technology is useful because they can see how they can achieve that and improve performance without sacrificing cost."

But Ian Henderson, professor of microbial biology at the University of Birmingham's School of Immunity, told MailOnline that people are more likely to catch an infection in an office or cinema because the "air is constantly filtered, turned over every two or three minutes" on a plane.



Related articles

Will iPhones be banned from planes?

Walkers and tourists warned over 'deadly toxin' killing dogs in New Forest




Chicken Sneezes
Chicken Sneezes


Germs on a Plane: Sicknesses Will Stick Around
Germs on a Plane: Sicknesses Will Stick Around


Learn About Plane Seat Covers
Learn About Plane Seat Covers