Working Group Global Engineering Service (G.E.S.)

Air curtains & filter hoods against viruses

In closed rooms, ventilation is considered an important element in the fight against corona.
Imago Images / Imagebroker
In closed rooms, ventilation is considered an important element in the fight against corona.

Everyone has now become accustomed to the basic rules to contain the corona pandemic: distance, hygiene, masks. New since autumn: ventilation. Aerosols are one of the most common ways of transmitting the corona virus, especially in closed rooms. They float in the air and spread throughout the room. A team of scientists is now applying its innovation directly at the source of the aerosols.

This text is an excerpt. The whole article is part of the cover story "Fresh wind for (survival) life" in the November issue of foodservice (German). Read now!

As long as there is no effective vaccination protection or appropriate medication, hosts and guests alike must continue to pay attention to increased hygiene, distance and mask wearing after the lockdown to prevent infection with sars-cov-2 viruses. Many people refrain from going to an indoor restaurant when the temperature gets colder for fear of infection. This is because aerosols as carriers of the viruses, with a diameter of 0.3 micrometers to 5 micrometers, are distributed by air flow and accumulate in the interior. According to studies, only 3,000 inhaled viruses can already cause illness.

In half-empty or plexiglas-paneled guest rooms, as well as with open windows at sub-zero temperatures, it is difficult to offer guests an experience in a feel-good atmosphere and generate sales. " Restaurants can be made safe and the effort is not too great," promises Michael D. Dechert. As a consultant, he heads the cooperation division of the Global Engineering Service (G.E.S.) working group based in Darmstadt. Dechert is part of the multidisciplinary team of national and international scientists, experts, physicians and specialist lawyers.

New method to filter out 99 percent of aerosols

Together they have developed a patented process that removes 99 percent of the aerosols in the air we breathe in closed rooms. This considerably reduces the risk of infection indoors and guests can sit at long tables without covering their mouths and noses, and the minimum distance of 1.5 metres can be significantly reduced.

G.E.S.'s method allows the air flow to be controlled in a targeted manner, the air change rates are adjusted to the room and "air curtains" separate seating areas from each other. When two guests sit opposite each other, air flows through a narrow gap at the height of the tabletop surface towards the ceiling, creating a kind of transparent curtain.

A highly efficient filter system, which is additionally installed above the tables in hoods, allows the air drawn in between the guests to be cleaned and returned to the room. The aerosols are thus captured at the point of origin, directly at the breathing level, after 40 cm and cannot accumulate further in the room. The air speed is so low that the aerosols are not swirled. According to Dechert, guests cannot feel or hear the filter systems. At first glance, the hoods look like a combination of a hanging lamp and an extractor hood, and because of their low height, they are also reminiscent of the lighting on billiard tables.
About G.E.S.
Global Engineering Service (G.E.S.) emerged from a consortium of cooperating companies and scientists. The core competence of the owners is the handling of biological, chemical and radioactive pollutants. This in the form of EU-certified experts or in the field of pollutant cleanup. In recent years, G.E.S. has concentrated exclusively on the organisation of scientific, interdisciplinary working groups. At the end of February 2020, the team already started to develop the ventilation-based virus protection system for indoor areas.