Fluid dynamics and epidemiology: Seasonality and transmission dynamics

Talib Dbouk, Dimitris Drikakis

    Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

    Abstract

    Epidemic models do not account for the effects of climate conditions on the transmission dynamics of viruses. This study presents the vital relationship between weather seasonality, airborne virus transmission, and pandemic outbreaks over a whole year. Using the data obtained from high-fidelity multi-phase, fluid dynamics simulations, we calculate the concentration rate of Coronavirus particles in contaminated saliva droplets and use it to derive a new Airborne Infection Rate (AIR) index. Combining the simplest form of an epidemiological model, the susceptible-infected-recovered, and the AIR index, we show through data evidence how weather seasonality induces two outbreaks per year, as it is observed with the COVID-19 pandemic worldwide. We present the results for the number of cases and transmission rates for three cities, New York, Paris, and Rio de Janeiro. The results suggest that two pandemic outbreaks per year are inevitable because they are directly linked to what we call weather seasonality. The pandemic outbreaks are associated with changes in temperature, relative humidity, and wind speed independently of the particular season. We propose that epidemiological models must incorporate climate effects through the AIR index.

    Original languageEnglish
    Article number021901
    JournalPhysics of Fluids
    Volume33
    Issue number2
    DOIs
    Publication statusPublished - 1 Feb 2021

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