Work and Equal Opportunities


Development of an innovative modular mobile test facility for modeling the microbiological efficiency of air purification under real-world conditions.

Not only since the onset of the COVID-19 pandemic, but also well before, OFI has been actively engaged in the field of air hygiene and filter analysis. The undeniable significance of airborne bioaerosols in disease transmission underscores the importance of mitigating their spread, an area that still requires further research. To address these knowledge gaps, the Austrian Research Institute for Chemistry and Technology (OFI), Güssing Energy Technologies (GET), and the Centre for Social Innovation (ZSI) are pooling their expertise. In the collaborative research project "AeroMobil," these three ACR members are working on developing a novel test facility that aims to assess air purification in various spatial concepts under real-world conditions. Coupled with a mathematical simulation model, this approach enables precise evaluations of potential infection risks.

Evaluation of Biological Risk

In order to realistically assess how effective a spatial concept is in protecting against allergens, viruses, and bacteria, OFI experts employ bioaerosols in their testing procedures. This allows particles to be not only measured by size and quantity but also evaluated based on their biological risk. This pioneering approach by researchers is noteworthy, as standardized biological testing methods for the inactivation of pathogens currently exist primarily for surface disinfection. The efficiency of air purification measures, on the other hand, has been limited in its assessment, with non-biological aerosol studies providing only restricted insights into pathogens. Additionally, testing has been confined to specific room dimensions.

Mobile Test Facility for Realistic Assessment

The "AeroMobil" research project aims to lay the foundation for conducting studies with infectious viruses and other airborne biological hazards directly in real indoor environments under standardized testing conditions. What was previously realized on a very small scale is intended to become possible on various dimensions and in a reproducible manner. Within the project, the characteristics of airborne model viruses can be compared to those of actual pathogens, offering high practical relevance for analyzing air hygiene in vehicles, healthcare facilities, or office spaces.

The close collaboration among the participating ACR institutes combines expertise from various disciplines. The development of mathematical models occurs in close coordination with actual laboratory experiments from the outset. This allows the adaptation of test scenarios to different room dimensions and the consideration of additional influencing factors (e.g., additional ventilation) without the need to individually test each scenario. Information on infection risks will also be automatically incorporated from a literature-based database.

Involving SMEs from the Beginning

Even as public attention to air hygiene may wane, the relevance of the topic remains high. Urbanization, air pollution, climate changes – global developments underscore the need for addressing air quality and implementing innovative solutions. To ensure that these solutions are application-oriented and meet industry needs, operators and manufacturers of air purification systems are involved from the outset in the "AeroMobil" research project. This direct knowledge transfer to SMEs ensures their ability to maintain a competitive position in a globally growing market.


Section: Work and Equal Opportunities


Type: Research

Program: ACR - Austrian Cooperative Research

Project Status: In progress

Start/End: 09/2023 - 02/2026

Project Duration: 30 months