Hot temperatures and high humidity are extremely detrimental to coronavirus molecules, according to details released at a White House press briefing.
During the Thursday press conference, attended by President Trump, DHS Undersecretary for Science and Technology William Bryan presented recent findings by the Coronavirus task force showing how high temperatures and humidity adversely affect the half life of COVID-19 “in saliva droplets on surfaces and in the air.”
“Our most striking observation to date is the powerful effect that solar light appears to have on killing the virus both surfaces and in the air,” Bryan said.
“We’ve seen a similar effect with both temperature and humidity as well where increasing the temperature or humidity, or both, is generally less favorable to the virus.”
“As the temperature increases, as the humidity increases with no sun involved you can see how drastically the half life goes down on that virus so the virus is dying at a much more rapid pace just from exposure to higher temperatures, and just from exposure to humidity,” Bryan said, explaining some of the items on the chart.
Once solar light is introduced to a high humidity/high temperature environment on a surface, the half life is cut down to two minutes, Bryan stated.
“You inject sunlight into that, you inject UV rays into that – the same effects on line two: that’s 70-75 degrees with 80 percent humidity on the surface – and look at line four, but now you inject the sun the half life goes from 6 hours to two minutes.”
With aerosol droplet tests, high temperature and high humidity with added sunlight brought the virus’s half life to close to 1.5 minutes, the chart shows.
“So in summary, within the conditions we’ve tested today the virus in droplets of saliva survive best in indoors and dry conditions. The virus does not survive as well in droplets of saliva – and that’s important because a lot of testing that’s being done is not necessarily being done #1 with the COVID-19 virus, #2 with saliva or respiratory fluids. And thirdly, the virus dies the quickest in the presence of direct sunlight under these conditions.”
Bryan went on to urge the president to use the data when addressing “practical decision making to lower the risks associated with the virus.”
Another slide presented by Bryan recommended “Best Practices for every American,” including “More activities outside” as “sunlight impedes virus transmission.”
Following Bryan’s presentation, President Trump sparred with a reporter who referred to the latest findings present as “rumors.”
REPORTER: "Respectfully, you’re the President and people tune in to these briefings and they want to get information and guidance, not rumors…."
TRUMP: "Hey, I’m the President and you’re fake news… Are you ready? It's just a suggestion." pic.twitter.com/zsGiBxUO7k
— Breaking911 (@Breaking911) April 23, 2020
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