ArenA test location for spreading and filtering aerosols

A scientific research project led by Eindhoven University of Technology (TU / e) into aerosols and COVID-19 should provide fundamental knowledge so that sports buildings are safe and accessible to the public during pandemics. It is being investigated how aerosols, and possibly also the corona virus, spread at sports venues. Tests are being carried out in the Johan Cruijff ArenA and sports centers CTO Papendal and The Hague and Maaspoort Sports and Events.

The coronavirus can spread directly, via the exchange of large saliva drops, and indirectly, via contaminated surfaces. Transmission is also likely to occur via aerosols. These tiny droplets of saliva can hang in the air and travel greater distances than 1.5 meters. Spreading the virus via aerosols would therefore be possible in athletes or spectators in a stadium or a sports hall

Generators and sensors
In the Johan Cruijff ArenA, measurements are first taken without an audience, with artificial aerosol generators in the stands. These generators disperse a comparable amount of aerosols as avid football fans. Various sensors have been placed in between to get a good picture of the distribution of very small saliva drops.

Finally, it is investigated whether aerosols can be filtered from the air with an air cleaning system with plasma, glass fiber and carbon filters, which is placed next to the seat rows. TU / e, the ArenA, Plasmamade and Ajax would also like to test with the public as soon as the government allows this. The hope is that these tests can take place in January. The research in the ArenA is led by TU / e professor Bert Blocken of the Built Environment faculty, an expert in the field of air currents.


Infection risk
The researchers are also looking at the dose and life span of the virus in aerosols, but also the risk of infection, the droplet and aerosol transmission by individuals, the aerosol concentrations in sports buildings and the movements of crowds in sports buildings. In addition, a general risk analysis methodology is being developed that can help the sports sector and the government to further refine their guidelines and protocols. The first results are expected to be available in early 2021.

The research project is taking place in collaboration with the Leiden University Medical Center, Utrecht University, Johannes Kepler University in Linz, PlasmaMade, GO2Sure and the Johan Cruijff ArenA test locations,

Maaspoort Sports and Events via Heroes Den Bosch and CTO Papendal and CTO The Hague.

The collaboration project is co-financed with a PPP allowance. This is made available by Health ~ Holland, Top Sector Life Sciences & Health, to stimulate public-private partnerships.