Infection protection in schools and educational facilities
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Infection protection in schools and educational facilities with double effectiveness

Acrylic glass partitions with an aerosol protective edge and high-performance air purifiers prevent viruses and droplets from flying around in the classroom

In schools and educational facilities, pupils learn together in a very confined space. This makes it easy for infectious diseases like COVID-19 to spread in classrooms. While suitable high-performance air purifiers and interior ventilation systems minimize the risk of an airborne infection with the coronavirus SARS-CoV-2, the acrylic glass partitions with an aerosol protective edge at the tables or desks allow for combined protection against flying droplets and aerosols.

The protection concept for schools is based on four essential elements

Scientifically recommended infection protection for schools in times of pandemic – without mandatory masks and open windows

Classroom teaching in times of pandemic can succeed, Prof. Dr. Christian Kähler is certain. Even without mandatory masks and open windows, for these measures impair our well-being and the quality of teaching. The world-renowned scientist has been researching the generation, spread and evaporation of aerosol particles in space for more than 25 years at the University of the Federal Armed Forces in Munich. Commissioned by Trotec, Prof. Kähler has researched a protection concept for schools ensuring that pupils and teachers are protected in the best possible way against an infection with the coronavirus during the lessons. Instead of wearing masks when seated and regular shock ventilation with open windows, the combined use of TAC high-performance air purifiers and innovative acrylic glass partitions allows for carefree teaching in the coronavirus crisis.

The protection concept for schools is based on four essential elements:

1. Partitions with an aerosol protective edge make the wearing of masks redundant
Transparent protective screens between the seats prevent the pupils from being infected with the COVID-19 pathogen through flying droplets or aerosols released during breathing by the person sitting next to them. The crystal-clear partitions with an aerosol protective edge provide reliable protection against larger droplets and also prevent the aerosols exhaled by the pupils from overcoming the partition and floating to the person sitting next to them. Wearing a mask is no longer necessary, except when leaving the seat.

2. TAC high-performance air purifiers provide virus-free air in classrooms
Virus-laden aerosol particles in the room air are considered to be the main carrier of the SARS-CoV-2 virus. By use of a high-performance air purifier of the TAC series, these tiny particles (0.1 – 0.3 micrometres) are reliably removed (99.995 %) from the room air in next to no time. The air cleaner filters the room air and minimizes the risk of an indirect infection since the virus load in the room is kept at a constantly low level. Intense shock ventilation is no longer necessary. As a result, the classroom remains consistently warm and lessons do not have to be interrupted every 20 minutes for ventilation. Ventilation can be done during the breaks in order to exchange the stale room air for fresh air.

3. FFP2/3 masks for safe moving around in the building
Particle-filtering respiratory masks (FFP2/3) are to be worn by teachers when approaching pupils. However, pupils are only required to wear an FFP2/3 mask when leaving the seat, walking through the school building or using public transport to attend school.

4. CO2traffic light for controlled airing behaviour
A high CO2content is a good indicator of a likewise high aerosol concentration. But excessive CO2values also seriously affect our well-being and ability to concentrate. Using the convenient air quality monitor BQ30 you can always keep an eye on the CO2room air concentration. This way, you can improve the room climate by supplying fresh air if necessary.

Functional principle of the acrylic glass shield with an all-round aerosol protective edge

The all-round aerosol protective edge of the acrylic glass shield from Trotec ensures that the aerosol particle stream swirls around the edge. As a result, the aerosol particles remain in the area of the infected person for a longer time and mix with the air before they are diluted and separated by the room air cleaner. When aerosol particles hit a protective screen that is NOT equipped with a protective edge, the particles will flow unhindered over the edge of the screen. This allows the potentially infectious aerosol particles to spread to the next row of tables.

In a nutshell: scientific protection concept for schools

In this video, Prof. Kähler shows how classrooms need to be arranged and equipped to minimize the risk of direct or indirect SARS-CoV-2 infections.

Aerosol measurement by Prof. Kähler at Obermenziger Gymnasium

In order to prove that mobile room air cleaners can be used to filter room air very efficiently even when many transparent protective walls are installed in the rooms, Prof. Kähler and his colleagues from the University of the Federal Armed Forces in Munich carried out measurements at the secondary school Obermenzinger Gymnasium. The results show that even at the most unfavourable position in the room with the greatest distance to the mobile room air cleaner, a very high filter effect can be achieved, almost reaching the theoretical value (7.8 air changes per hour instead of the theoretical 8). The occasionally expressed criticism that these protective screens significantly reduce the filter effect of the mobile room air cleaners is thus quantitatively refuted.

Fig. 1a: Conventional setup of desks in a classroom. The desks are too close to each other and the pupils and teachers are not protected by means of protective screens and an air cleaner.
Conventional setup of desks in a classroom. The desks are too close to each other and the pupils and teachers are not protected by means of protective screens and an air cleaner.
Fig. 1b: Setup of desks recommended in the protection concept. The desks are positioned further apart and the pupils and teachers are protected by means of protective screens and an air cleaner.
Setup of desks recommended in the protection concept. The desks are positioned further apart and the pupils and teachers are protected by means of protective screens and an air cleaner.

Implementation of the hygiene concept in the classroom

When arranging the desks, the minimum distances should be observed in order to achieve the best possible protection against a SARS-CoV-2 infection. The available space must be optimally used and the distances and walking routes adapted accordingly.

Positioning of acrylic glass partitions between the pupils

The partitions with an all-round protective edge are installed between pupils sitting next to each other (fig. 1b). If there is a sufficient distance of 1.5 m between the desks, the seats next to the walking routes do not have to be additionally secured with partitions.

Positioning of the TAC high-performance air purifier

The air cleaner should be positioned either at the front next to the board or centrally at the back. If the desks are arranged in a U-shape, the room air cleaner can also be positioned in the middle of the room. Due to its low height of 1.3 m, the TAC ensures a good view of the teacher and board even when placed centrally. The ceiling should be as smooth as possible in the area of the fan position. The volumetric flow of the room air cleaner must be at least six times the room volume. During the breaks, the volumetric flow should be set to maximum. Additionally, we recommend airing the room for a short time to reduce the CO2 concentration. Alternatively, a window can be left in the tilt position during the entire lesson. This does not impair the filter performance of the air cleaner.

Fig. 3a: Setup with tables of 4 in the dining area (e.g. canteen) not recommended.
Setup with tables of 4 in the dining area (e.g. canteen) not recommended.
Fig. 3b: Setup with long tables for dining areas recommended in the protection concept. The people are protected by protective screens and an air cleaner.
Setup with long tables for dining areas recommended in the protection concept. The people are protected by protective screens and an air cleaner.

Implementation of the hygiene concept during school catering (canteen)

If possible, small tables should be avoided for lunch (fig. 3a). Instead, we recommend a setup with long tables with a sufficient distance between the pupils sitting opposite each other (fig. 3b).

Positioning of acrylic glass partitions between the pupils

Transparent protective screens with an all-round aerosol protective edge must be installed between the pupils. As an alternative, a row of tables can also be positioned against a wall.

Positioning of the TAC high-performance air purifier

High-performance air purifiers are required to reduce the risk of indirect infections. Depending on the room situation and size, the use of several devices is recommended to ensure at least a 6-fold room air circulation per hour with highly efficient HEPA air purification in the entire catering area. People working at the serving counters must also be protected by partitions with an aerosol protective edge. Additionally, the staff working at the counters must wear FFP2/3 mask to protect both themselves and the pupils to the greatest extent possible.

Fig. 2: Positioning of air cleaners and protective screens recommended in the protection concept for a U-shaped table setup.
Positioning of air cleaners and protective screens recommended in the protection concept for a U-shaped table setup.
Fig. 4: Simple face masks or surgical masks do not provide sufficient protection against an infection since aerosol particles can escape into the room air to the sides and to the top. During inhalation, the aerosol particles also flow through the gap at the edge of the mask, passing unhindered into the lungs. Therefore, the protection concept recommends the use of FFP2/3 masks.
Simple face masks or surgical masks do not provide sufficient protection against an infection.

Installation in a conference room / staff room

In conference rooms and staff rooms, a U-shaped arrangement of tables is recommended (see fig. 2).

Transparent protective screens with an all-round edge must be installed between the seats to minimize the risk of direct infections. The air cleaner should be positioned in the middle of the table arrangement to ensure optimum protection against an indirect infection. To improve the room air, the CO2 concentration should be permanently monitored with a particle measuring device BQ30 in order to supply outdoor air as required. Intense ventilation with a strong decrease in temperature is no longer necessary, since the viruses are removed by the air cleaner.

FFP2/3 masks must be worn on all corridors inside the school building as these premises cannot be secured otherwise. Simple face masks or surgical masks do not provide sufficient protection (fig. 4).

BQ30 air quality monitor

Regular ventilation and CO2 traffic lights

In addition to permanent air purification, the people in the classroom are required to open the windows for shock ventilation from a CO2 value of 1000 ppm. If room air cleaners are used, this is not absolutely necessary for reducing the aerosol concentrations. However, it also helps to prevent high CO2 levels in the room air, which can affect our well-being and ability to concentrate. The CO2 content is monitored as required (depending on the number of people in the room) using the air quality monitor BQ30.

All information in the “Guide to safe school teaching”

In the “Guide to safe school teaching”, available as a PDF, you can see for yourself how comparatively easy it is to implement a safe hygiene concept for schools. The guide contains how-to information for implementing the hygiene concept for schools recommended by Prof. Christian Kähler, scientifically proven facts on the risks of infection in a classroom, and technical solutions to reduce the risk of infection during the lessons to a minimum. You can download the PDF here:

Click here to download the Guide to safe school teaching
Infection protection in schools and educational facilities

Webinar on protection concepts for schools by Prof. Kähler

How can infections be prevented in schools? In this approx. 50-minute webinar, Prof. Dr. Kähler explains all aspects of the protection concept for schools and provides detailed information on the scientific background.

Click here to go directly to the scientific protection concept for schools

Normality, how does that work?
Information for teachers and parents:

Everything has changed since COVID-19. We are faced with a different kind of everyday life. However, the longing for familiar normality persists. Are there solutions that can make school life more pleasant and uncomplicated again for everyone involved?

Click here to find out about a scientific protection concept for schools, which improves protection against the risk of infection and still simplifies everyday school life.

The protection concept fulfils the SARS-CoV-2 occupational safety and health standards:

Read an excerpt from the occupational safety and health standards of the Federal Ministry of Labour and Social Affairs here:

Special technical measures

1. Workplace design
Employees shall keep a sufficient distance (at least 1.5 m) from other persons. Where this is not possible even through work organisation measures, alternative protective measures shall be taken. Transparent partitions are to be installed when there is public traffic and, if possible, also to separate workplaces where there is otherwise no protective distance.

Furthermore, the protection concept does not violate the occupational safety and health rules regarding the room temperature – as is the case with shock ventilation, for example – since the temperature in the classroom does not drop below 19 °C when air cleaners are used.

Buy

School protective wall Acrylic glass with aerosol protective edge SMALL 800 x 69 X 500 show in Trotec online shop

School protective wall Acrylic glass with aerosol protective edge SMALL 800 x 69 X 500

Made in Germany - Quality RÖHM acrylic glass plate with all-round, rounded aerosol protection edge and extension foot.

You save: 59.63 €

154.80 € 95.17 € incl. VAT Show net price (VAT not included)

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School protective wall Acrylic glass with aerosol protective edge MEDIUM 1007 x 69 x 688 show in Trotec online shop

School protective wall Acrylic glass with aerosol protective edge MEDIUM 1007 x 69 x 688

Made in Germany - Quality RÖHM acrylic glass plate with all-round, rounded aerosol protection edge and extension foot.

You save: 64.58 €

178.80 € 114.22 € incl. VAT Show net price (VAT not included)

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Office protective wall acrylic glass with aerosol protective edge 1158 x 69 x 688 show in Trotec online shop

Office protective wall acrylic glass with aerosol protective edge 1158 x 69 x 688

Made in Germany - RÖHM high quality acrylic sheet with rounded aerosol protective edges, including holes in the protective edge for fixing with metal clips.

You save: 94.36 €

189.53 € 95.17 € incl. VAT Show net price (VAT not included)

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Counter top acrylic glass with aerosol protection edge SMALL 595 x 250 X 750 show in Trotec online shop

Counter top acrylic glass with aerosol protection edge SMALL 595 x 250 X 750

Made in Germany - quality RÖHM acrylic glass panel with all-round aerosol protection edge and feet

You save: 59.33 €

125.93 € 66.60 € incl. VAT Show net price (VAT not included)

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Counter top acrylic glass with aerosol protection edge MEDIUM 795 x 250 X 750 show in Trotec online shop

Counter top acrylic glass with aerosol protection edge MEDIUM 795 x 250 X 750

Made in Germany - quality RÖHM acrylic glass panel with all-round aerosol protection edge and feet

You save: 62.52 €

138.65 € 76.13 € incl. VAT Show net price (VAT not included)

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Counter top acrylic glass with aerosol protection edge LARGE 995 x 250 x 750 show in Trotec online shop

Counter top acrylic glass with aerosol protection edge LARGE 995 x 250 x 750

Made in Germany - quality RÖHM acrylic glass panel with all-round aerosol protection edge and feet

You save: 65.73 €

151.37 € 85.64 € incl. VAT Show net price (VAT not included)

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Technical data

Table divider, small

Technical data
General information
  Article number 4.311.000.100
Dimensions
  Width (packaging excluded) [mm] 1,000
  Height (packaging excluded) [mm] 500
  Width (protective wall area) [mm] 800
  Height (protective wall area) [mm] 500
Weight
  (packaging excluded) [kg] 11.5

 standard equipment

 optionally available

 not available

Table divider, medium

Technical data
General information
  Article number 4.311.000.105
Dimensions
  Width (packaging excluded) [mm] 1,200
  Height (packaging excluded) [mm] 688
  Width (protective wall area) [mm] 1,007
  Height (protective wall area) [mm] 688
Weight
  (packaging excluded) [kg] 12

 standard equipment

 optionally available

 not available

Table divider, office

Technical data
General information
  Article number 4.311.000.110
Dimensions
  Width (packaging excluded) [mm] 1,158
  Height (packaging excluded) [mm] 688
Weight
  (packaging excluded) [kg] 12

 standard equipment

 optionally available

 not available

Countertop, S

Technical data
General information
  Article number 4.311.000.150
Dimensions
  Width (packaging excluded) [mm] 750
  Height (packaging excluded) [mm] 750
Weight
  (packaging excluded) [kg] 11.5

 standard equipment

 optionally available

 not available

Countertop, M

Technical data
General information
  Article number 4.311.000.151
Dimensions
  Width (packaging excluded) [mm] 795
  Height (packaging excluded) [mm] 750
Weight
  (packaging excluded) [kg] 11.5

 standard equipment

 optionally available

 not available

Countertop, L

Technical data
General information
  Article number 4.311.000.152
Dimensions
  Width (packaging excluded) [mm] 995
  Height (packaging excluded) [mm] 750
Weight
  (packaging excluded) [kg] 11.5

 standard equipment

 optionally available

 not available

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