WEBINAR: Virus Transmission and Mitigation in Buildings: Past, Present, and Future

Event Date: November 11, 2020
Hosted By: College of Engineering
Time: 3:30-5:00 pm EDT
Open To: Anyone
Priority: No
School or Program: College of Engineering
College Calendar: Show

Viruses can spread readily in buildings, especially in office or other commercial/institutional buildings that have high occupant density, many shared spaces and surfaces, and significant recirculation of indoor air. Owners and operators of commercial and institutional buildings responded quickly and decisively to the COVID-19 pandemic with a number of effective strategies, including moving non-essential workers to remote sites to reduce occupant density, requiring personal protective equipment (PPE), introducing continuous disinfection strategies for common surfaces, and increasing outdoor air ventilation rates and air filter efficiencies.  These strategies were informed by previous virus transmission events that have occurred in buildings (e.g., SARS) and by panels of experts who worked together to develop and quickly publish effective guidelines for buildings.  However, these strategies are not all sustainable beyond the current pandemic crisis.  This webinar will address a variety of issues relevant to virus transmission and mitigation in buildings, including developing an understanding of: 1) mechanisms for virus transmission in buildings informed by previous and evolving studies, 2) short-term mitigation strategies that have been developed to address the COVID-19 pandemic, 3) impacts of mitigation strategies on energy use and operation of buildings, and 4) future "virus-proof" designs and strategies for buildings.


Panagiota Karava

Panagiota Karava, Jack and Kay Hockema Professor in Civil Engineering, Purdue University

Panagiota Karava currently is the Jack and Kay Hockema Associate Professor in Civil Engineering at Purdue and is affiliated with both Ray W. Herrick Laboratories and the Center for High Performance Buildings (CHPB). Dr. Karava joined Purdue in 2009 as founding member of the Architectural Engineering Program within the School of Civil Engineering. Since then, she has played a leading role in establishing the new program as well as developing new teaching and research infrastructure. Dr. Karava’ research interests are broadly related to high performance buildings and smart building technology. She has authored more than 100 journal and conference publications and, has a track-record in leading ambitious and high-impact research partnerships and interdisciplinary teams. She is the recipient of the 2014 Wansik Research Excellence Award at Purdue and the New Investigator Award from ASHRAE (2013).


Bill Bahnfleth

Bill Bahnfleth, Professor of Architectural Engineering, Pennsylvania State University

William Bahnfleth is a professor of architectural engineering at the Pennsylvania State University. He held previous positions as Senior Consultant for ZBA, Inc. in Cincinnati, OH and Principal Investigator at the U.S. Army Construction Engineering Research Laboratory in Champaign, IL. He holds BS, MS, and PhD degrees in Mechanical Engineering from the University of Illinois and is a registered professional engineer. At Penn State, Dr. Bahnfleth teaches undergraduate courses in HVAC fundamentals and system design, and graduate courses in district cooling systems and indoor air quality. His research interests cover a wide variety of indoor environmental control topics including chilled water pumping systems, stratified thermal energy storage, protection of building occupants from indoor bioaerosol releases, and ultraviolet germicidal irradiation systems. He is the author or co-author of more than 170 technical papers and articles and 14 books and book chapters. Dr. Bahnfleth is a fellow of ASHRAE, the American Society of Mechanical Engineers (ASME) and the International Society for Indoor Air Quality and Climate (ISIAQ). He served as President of ASHRAE in 2013-2014. His ASHRAE honors include the Louise and Bill Holladay Distinguished Fellow Award, E.K. Campbell Award, and F. Paul Anderson Award. He is also a recipient of the Penn State Engineering Alumni Society’s World-Class Engineering Faculty Award.

Brandon Boor

Brandon Boor, Assistant Professor of Civil Engineering, Purdue University

Dr. Brandon E. Boor is an Assistant Professor of Civil Engineering (Architectural Engineering Area) and Environmental and Ecological Engineering (by courtesy) at Purdue University. Dr. Boor conducts research on the physics and chemistry of indoor air. His group applies state-of-the-art measurement techniques to explore the dynamics of indoor air pollutants in diverse indoor environments. Dr. Boor teaches courses on indoor air quality, thermodynamics, and architectural engineering and advises an undergraduate air quality engineering service learning team. He received his Ph.D. in Civil Engineering from The University of Texas at Austin in 2015 and is a recipient of a 2019 National Science Foundation CAREER Award.

Qingyan Chen

Qingyan Chen, Professor of Mechanical Engineering, Purdue University

Dr. Qingyan “Yan” Chen is the James G. Dwyer Professor of Mechanical Engineering at Purdue University, USA. He serves also as the Editor-in-Chief of the international journal “Building and Environment”. Dr. Chen was the founding co-Principal Director of the Federal Aviation Administration (FAA) Center of Excellence for Airliner Cabin Environment Research from 2004 to 2010. Dr. Chen earned his B.Eng. in 1983 from Tsinghua University in China and M. Eng. in 1985 and Ph.D. in 1988 from the Delft University of Technology in the Netherlands. He conducted his post-doctoral research as a Research Scientist at the Swiss Federal Institute of Technology (ETH-Zurich) and worked as a Project Manager for TNO in the Netherlands. Dr. Chen has received the Distinguished Achievement Award for “individuals who have made substantial contributions to the field of building performance simulation over the course of their careers” from International Building Performance Simulation Association (IBPSA) in 2013, the John Rydberg Gold Medal for “outstanding contribution to the advancement of modelling and measurement of ventilation and air distribution in buildings" from the Scandinavian Federation of Heating, Ventilating and Sanitary Engineering Associations in 2011, and the Willis J. Whitfield Award "for significant contributions to the field of contamination control through numerous published papers, studies, and reports" from the Institute of Environmental Sciences and Technology in 2007. Dr. Chen's current research topics include indoor environments; aircraft cabin environments; and energy-efficient, healthy, and sustainable building design and analysis.

Jon Douglas

Jon Douglas, Director of Advanced Development for the Global Controls group, Johnson Controls

Jon Douglas is the Director of Advanced Development for the Global Controls group at Johnson Controls. Throughout his 25-year career in the HVAC&R industry, he has established a reputation as an innovator. He has 34 patents issued and numerous others in process. Jon has a broad range of business experience ranging from small technology startups to large Fortune 500 companies. He currently leads JCI’s Building Infection Control WG technical team, tasked with developing solutions to mitigate COVID infection risk in buildings. He is a Purdue alumnus, earning both his BSME and MSME degrees at Purdue.