HEPA filters capture extremely small airborne particles and are frequently used by airlines to help reduce the risk of spreading germs, now including COVID-19.
Prior to the pandemic and our efforts to help stop the spread of COVID-19, the Federal Aviation Administration already had fairly strict health and safety measures in place to protect passengers and cabin crew on U.S. aircrafts.
In enclosed environments, like airplane cabins, it is vital to maintain air purity to minimize harmful particles from circulating throughout the airplane, like those associated with the spread of COVID-19.
Strict cabin air quality standards are in place for airline as per the FAA regulations, specifically for ventilation. Additionally, studies have shown cabin air is as good as, or better than, the air found in offices and homes.
Most U.S. commercial airplanes use High Efficiency Particulate Air (HEPA) filters, which remove 99.97 percent of particulate measuring 0.3 micrometers or greater in diameter. The HEPA filters used on commercial airplanes are the same quality filters used in hospital isolation rooms. A well maintained HEPA air filtration system is important to the maintenance of a healthy and comfortable atmosphere on airplanes.
The simplified illustration above shows typical airliner cabin air flow. After entering through the engines, some air is diverted and mixed 50/50 with cabin air cleaned by HEPA filters. The air circulates primarily from ceiling to exhaust vents in the floor. While fresh air flows in, a similar amount flows out and leaves the aircraft. During most phases of flight, the 50/50 ratio is maintained and cabin air is completely exchanged for fresh air every two to three minutes. Source: FAA
This high rate of exchanged air in combination with the HEPA filters helps make air quality in aircrafts equal to, or superior to, general building environments.
While HEPA filters and ventilation play a large role in helping stop the spread of COVID-19 by helping to remove harmful particles in the air in spaces like airplanes, hospitals, and other indoor areas, travelling should still be avoided unless it is necessary or deemed safe by your local health authorities.
If you’re looking for certified air filters, contact our team today. We are certified manufactures, with over 35 years’ experience designing, engineering, manufacturing and testing custom air filters, including custom cabin air filters.