Abstract

In this study, a three-stage bioaerosol sampler with a sampling flow rate of 170 L/min was designed and fabricated for sampling the bioaerosols released during human breathing and coughing, and its performance was evaluated. The sampler was constructed using a cyclone separator with a cutoff size of 2.5 µm as a preseparator, a multi-nozzle virtual impactor with a cutoff size of 0.34 µm as an aerosol concentrator, and a BioSampler, which is a commercial product, for collecting bioaerosols in a collection fluid. The collection efficiency of the sampler was evaluated through simulations and experiments. Only particles with sizes of 0.1-4 µm were selectively collected in the collection fluid. Bacteriophage bioaerosols were sampled using the developed sampler and ACD-200 Bobcat sampler, which is a commercial product. The amounts of collected bacteriophages were compared using the polymerase chain reaction (PCR) technique. The sampling performance of the developed sampler was similar to that of the ACD-200 Bobcat sampler. Moreover, the developed sampler showed its ability to sample bioaerosols of a specific size-range and collect them directly in a collection fluid for the PCR analysis. Therefore, the developed sampler is expected to be useful for indoor environmental monitoring by effectively sampling the bioaerosols released indoors during human breathing and coughing.

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