LOUISVILLE, Ky. (GLOBE NEWSWIRE) — Surges in COVID-19 cases have accelerated research to find ways to reduce the spread of viruses, especially as airborne transmission seems more likely.  American Air Filter, Co. Inc., and its subsidiary Flanders Corp. (AAF Flanders) tested the effectiveness of its commercial air filters against a type of coronavirus, the Porcine Epidemic Diarrhea (PED) Virus.  The tests, conducted at the company’s Clean AIR Center in Jeffersonville, Ind., confirm that its commercial air filters reduce the presence of this virus surrogate in airborne particles, including in sizes similar to airborne droplets produced when a person sneezes, coughs or speaks.

The study was adapted from University of Minnesota research that showed a correlation between particle filtration and virus removal. That study used a porcine virus half the size of a typical coronavirus and used airflows much slower than are typical for a commercial system. AAF Flanders conducted this new research using PED virus, a member of the coronavirus family that behaves similarly, when airborne, to the virus that causes COVID-19.

Virus particles marked with a fluorescent dye were mixed with other airborne particles and drawn through individual air filters in test ducts at an airspeed mimicking commercial HVAC system airspeed. Samples of airborne particles were then collected upstream and downstream of the filter. Nikki Goss, M.S., manager of Biological Safety and Research, found that AAF Flanders air filters reduce the presence of the PED virus at approximately the same rate as overall particle removal.

“We have always been leading the way forward when it comes to filtration, but we never expected our expertise could aid in fighting a pandemic,” said Nathanial Nance, VP of Global R&D. “We take pride in knowing our products could reduce the risk of virus transmission.”

AAF Flanders, headquartered in Louisville, Ky., is the world’s largest manufacturer of air filtration solutions. For nearly 100 years, AAF Flanders has offered comprehensive solutions designed to remove and control airborne particulates and contaminants in residential, commercial, and industrial applications.

AAF Flanders makes no claims regarding the ability of its filters to remove airborne SARS-CoV-2. Test results should be viewed as directional and real-world performance is environment-dependent. Methodology was based on prior tests comparing standard ASHRAE 52.2 testing to predictive analysis based on virus carriers.

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