Coronavirus can survive on some surfaces for days, study shows

The new coronavirus causing the COVID-19 disease can survive on some surfaces for days or in the air for several hours, according to a new study.

Research published in the New England Journal of Medicine (NEJM) on Tuesday suggested that SARS-CoV-2 was detectable for up to four hours on copper and two to three days on plastic and stainless steel, and up to 24 hours on cardboard.

Using a nebuliser to simulate a person coughing or sneezing, scientists from the US-based Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC), University of California, Los Angeles and Princeton found that the virus became an aerosol, meaning its particles became suspended in the air, making it detectable for almost three hours.

The study was first posted on a medical pre-print website last week before it was peer-reviewed, and attracted much attention, including some criticism from scientists who said that it may have overstated the airborne threat

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