The virus spreads most commonly through close contact, scientists say. But under certain conditions, people farther than 6 feet apart can become infected by exposure to tiny droplets and particles exhaled by an infected person, the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention said in October. Those droplets and particles can linger in the air for minutes to hours.
To visually illustrate the risk of airborne transmission in real time, The Washington Post used a military-grade infrared camera capable of detecting exhaled breath. Numerous experts – epidemiologists, virologists and engineers – supported the notion of using exhalation as a conservative proxy to show potential transmission risk in various settings.
Excerpted from The Seattle Times, December 11, 2020