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Preventing transmission of COVID-19: The importance of air cleaning in schools

5 min read
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Air quality is a topic that had been on the public health agenda long before COVID-19. The pandemic did however bring the conversation to the fore. Here, we explore the motivations and methods behind introducing air cleaning in schools across Germany.

When we talk about air quality in schools, the prevention of harmful virus transmission is a priority. But beyond this, it is also crucial to ensure proper ventilation for general comfort and safety purposes.

Germany is leading the way when it comes to ensuring that schools have the proper air cleaning required to keep children and young adults breathing fresh, clean air so as to not affect their studies or physical health.

What are the risks of unventilated school spaces?

Without sufficient ventilation, the risks of infection from the SARS-CoV-2 virus (COVID-19) poses a substantial challenge for schools. The very nature of an education institution means bringing together larger groups of people in confined spaces for prolonged periods of time, and consequently a higher risk of particles spreading from person to person.

In Germany, the government authorities are accountable for ensuring a safe learning and working environment for students and teachers. The pandemic has led to the introduction of AHA rules, which essentially outline that distancing and hygiene measures should be in place, and that masks should be worn during everyday life and activities. As part of these measures, grants were provided to schools to increase ventilation within facilities.

Many schools have been alternating the locations of lessons, some undertaking homeschooling or distance learning. Some classrooms have even halved the amount of pupils in each class. The measures being taken to prevent transmission are extensive, and rightly so. Transmission of viruses, germs, dust, pollen and allergens pose a threat to the health and wellbeing of students, teachers and other employees alike.

Distance learning and homeschooling aren’t viable solutions for the longer term, which is why so many are turning to Heylo air purification.

How does transmission happen?

The transmission of viruses by aerosol particles can happen when an individual is breathing, speaking or coughing. Air purifiers with a HEPA H14 filter can reduce the aerosol load by up to 95% within just 30 minutes, significantly reducing the risk of infection. COVID-19 including the Delta and Omicron variants, is posing a big threat to health, the economy, livelihoods and education.

If a student tests positive, they have to quarantine for up to 2 weeks, along with the entire class. This has wider implications whereby the parent will have to stay home from work to look after the child that is quarantined, further affecting health and damaging the economy.

Air purifiers are an effective solution to preventing unwanted particles in the air, so much so that they’re used in offices, laboratories and medical settings, as well as schools.

How is Heylo air purification helping to fight against COVID-19 in schools?

Heylo air purifiers have HEPA H14 filters which can dramatically reduce aerosol pollution. The powerful technology circulates and cleans the air in a room a minimum of 5 times per hour. The air exchange rate can be increased and decreased according to requirements.

Ventilation cycles can also be extended, such as in the winter months when low temperatures hit, further reducing the chance of catching colds and other illnesses, ensuring that learning is left uninterrupted.

The devices have been designed to be as quiet as possible during operation so that they do not disturb the students, teachers or the lessons taking place. Let’s take a look at our client Hamburg, where we provided all in all 2000 devices (2 devices per classroom) that had the greatest amount of air turnover as possible with the minimal possible noise output.

The air flow is determined by the arrangement of the exhaust and intake openings of the air cleaner, the geometry of the room, the fixtures and any existing heat sources.

What makes Heylo products stand out?

Since the 1960s, Heylo has proudly manufactured robust and durable products. Despite being developed over 60 years ago, the promises that we held then still ring true today without compromise.

Heylo products are developed with multiple applications in mind to ensure absolute flexibility in their use no matter where they are put into operation. They are particularly popular in buildings and spaces which are densely populated, or where people are gathering for prolonged periods of time.

The Heylo HL 800 air purifier with the HEPA H14 filter has been widely used in schools in the Free and Hanseatic City of Hamburg. These devices were put forward by a panel of professionals, technicians and users. As our products have an impressive reputation for high-quality performance and low-noise output, this led to a 2,000-strong order for the devices.

Many of Heylo’s competitors are louder with the same performance data, and other devices with the same noise level are known to be less powerful, which makes them unsuitable for classrooms. Furthermore, the Heylo HEPA filters are EN-compliant and certified. This is often not the case with the competition, so that it cannot be determined whether it is the specified filter class.

As a general rule of thumb, 2-3 Heylo HL 800 devices are recommended per classroom and distributed diagonally to increase the effectiveness of the air distribution.

With a professional Europe-wide sales network, Heylo’s field and internal sales employees are well-placed to advise on air purification for schools and many other applications. From exceptional technical support and advice, to maintenance and repairs, Heylo goes above and beyond to deliver best-in-class technology that keeps climates controlled and people across the world safe.

If you would like to learn more about the Heylo HL 800, use the form below to get in touch with one of our expert team.

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