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Title: Particle deposition onto people in a transit venue

Following the release of an aerosolized biological agent in a transit venue, material deposited on waiting passengers and subsequently shed from their clothing may significantly magnify the scope and consequences of such an attack. Published estimates of the relevant particle deposition and resuspension parameters for complex, real-world environments such as a transit facility are non-existent. In this study, measurements of particle deposition velocity onto cotton fabric samples affixed to stationary and walking persons in a large multimodal transit facility were obtained for tracer particle releases carried out as part of a larger study of subway airflows and particulate transport. Deposition velocities onto cotton and wool were also obtained using a novel automated sampling mechanism deployed at locations in the transit facility and throughout the subway. The data revealed higher deposition velocities than have been previously reported for people exposed in test chambers or office environments. Furthermore, the relatively high rates of deposition onto people in a transit venue obtained in this study suggest it is possible that fomite transport by subway and commuter/regional rail passengers could present a significant mechanism for rapidly dispersing a biological agent throughout a metropolitan area and beyond.
 [1] ;  [1] ;  [2] ;  [3]
  1. Argonne National Lab. (ANL), Argonne, IL (United States)
  2. Lawrence Berkeley National Lab. (LBNL), Berkeley, CA (United States); Aclima Inc., San Francisco, CA (United States)
  3. S31 LLC, Reisterstown, MD (United States)
Publication Date:
Grant/Contract Number:
Accepted Manuscript
Journal Name:
Health Security
Additional Journal Information:
Journal Volume: 14; Journal Issue: 4; Journal ID: ISSN 2326-5094
Mary Ann Liebert, Inc.
Research Org:
Argonne National Lab. (ANL), Argonne, IL (United States)
Sponsoring Org:
US Department of Homeland Security (DHS); USDOE
Country of Publication:
United States
59 BASIC BIOLOGICAL SCIENCES; 60 APPLIED LIFE SCIENCES; bioterrorism; fomite transport; particle deposition
OSTI Identifier: