A new study, yet to be evaluated and published has revealed that COVID-19 could be destroyed by sunlight. A science and technology advisor to the Department of Homeland Security secretary told reporters at the White House that government scientists had found ultraviolet rays had a potent impact on the pathogen.
Scientific speaking, radiation in ultraviolet could destroy the virus’s genetic material and their ability to replicate, backing up the report that sunlight could be the end of COVID-19 pandemic as summer approaches.
“Our most striking observation to date is the powerful effect that solar light appears to have on killing the virus, both surfaces and in the air. We’ve seen a similar effect with both temperature and humidity as well, were increasing the temperature and humidity or both are generally less favourable to the virus,” he noted.
Major findings of the experiment which was carried out at the National Biodefense Analysis and Countermeasures Center in Maryland, showed that the when the temperatures were between 21 to 24 degrees Celsius with 20 per cent humidity on a non-porous surface (door handles and stainless surfaces) the virus half-life was 18 hours. But the half-life dropped to six hours when humidity rose to 80 per cent, and to just two minutes when sunlight was added to the equation.
When the virus was suspended in the air, the virus’ half-life was one hour under the same temperature and humidity but dropped to just one and a half minutes, in the presence of sunlight. Which led to the conclusion that summer-like condition will curtail the virus from spreading much faster.
Previous studies have supported the fact that the virus fares better in cold and dry weather than it does in hot and humid conditions. This could be explained by findings that respiratory droplets remain airborne for longer in colder weather, but the virus degraded more quickly on hotter surfaces because a protective layer of fat that envelops them dries out faster.