The new coronavirus lives on hard surfaces for 3 hours to 3 days, new research by US National Institutes of Health says min research published.
The new coronavirus is primarily a respiratory illness, and it typically spreads via airborne droplets from an infected person’s coughs or sneezes.
Viral particles can survive for a time on surfaces, but the coronavirus’ lifespan on surfaces depends on various factors like temperature and humidity.
New research suggests the coronavirus can last between three hours and three days on surfaces, depending on the material.
New NIH research suggests the virus can live up to four hours on copper, up to a day on cardboard, and up to three days on plastic and stainless steel. The coronavirus can also live in the air for up to three hours, the study authors found.
The NIH researchers compared the new coronavirus’ lifespan on surfaces to that of the SARS coronavirus. They found that both coronaviruses lived the longest on stainless steel and polypropylene, a type of plastic used in everything from toys to car parts. Both viruses lasted up to 3 days on plastic, and the new coronavirus lasted up to 3 days on steel.
A recent study concluded that if a person spent five seconds touching a surface where the influenza A virus lives, 32% of the virus living on that surface could transfer to their hands.
Another study published last week in the Journal of Hospital Infection looked at the lifespans of other coronaviruses found in humans on various surfaces.
The SARS coronavirus, at a temperature of 68 degrees Fahrenheit (20 degrees Celsius), lasted for two days on steel, four days on wood and glass, and five days on metal, plastic, and ceramics.
Nonporous surfaces like doorknobs and tabletops are better at carrying viruses in general.
Porous surfaces – like money, hair, and fabric – don’t allow viruses to survive as long because the small spaces or holes in them can trap the microbe and prevent its transfer,
The Journal of Hospital Infection study also found that spikes in temperature made a difference in the lifespans of coronaviruses. An 18-degree Fahrenheit jump, from 68 degrees to 86 degrees, decreased how long SARS lasted on steel surfaces by at least half.
That’s because some coronaviruses, including this new one, have a viral envelope: a fat layer that protects viral particles when travelling from person to person in the air. That sheath can dry out, however, killing the virus.
So Australia’s higher humidity, moderate temperatures, low wind, and a solid surface are all good for a coronavirus’ survival.