Australian scientists have reportedly discovered that SARS-CoV-2, the virus that causes the COVID-19 disease, can survive on surfaces for up to 28 days. These surfaces include glass on mobile phones, vinyl, stainless steel, and paper banknotes.
The CSIRO, an Australian government agency for scientific research, has previously stated that the research conducted at the ACDP (Australian Centre for Disease Preparedness) in Geelong also discovered the fact that the virus can survive for a longer period at lower temperatures. Additionally, the statement further added that the virus lasts longer on smooth surfaces than on porous surfaces including that of cotton, as well as survives longer on paper banknotes as compared to plastic banknotes.
The experiment was conducted in a dark space without the impact of the harmful UV rays from the sun. Australian National University’s professor of infectious diseases, Peter Collignon, has cited that the virus would have been inactivated sooner on the outside environments due to UV light. However, researchers are currently uncertain about how the large surfaces play a role in virus transmission.
Mr. Collignon added that over 90% of the virus transmission is likely to occur by being in close contact with the infected person as they cough or sneeze, while nearly 10% of the transmission is related to touching surfaces with droplets of the infected fluid.
As per reliable reports, the coronavirus can also last for 10 days longer than the influenza virus on some surfaces.
Dr. Debbie Eagles, ACDP’s deputy director, has reportedly stated that the virus remained extremely strong at 20°C, surviving for up to 28 days on smooth surfaces. According to further experiments carried out at the temperature of 30C and 40C, the survival times of the virus decreased as the temperature increased. These research results will reinforce the need for good hygiene practices such as cleaning surfaces and regular handwashing.
The degree of surface contact as well as the infectious dose of the virus are yet to be determined.