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| Introduction to the Pathogen Control Engineering research group at Leeds CFD of ventilation in room  |

Click here for current Postdoctural and PhD research opportunities

CFD of ventilation in roomThe continuing problem of hospital acquired infection and the extensive media coverage has prompted significant research into effective infection control strategies over recent years. Although many infections are transmitted through direct hand contact, and hand hygiene is one of the key strategies in infection control, other mechanisms also play an important role.

Airborne transmission is known to be a primary mechanism in the transmission of TB and influenza, but has also been implicated in the transmission of nosocomial infections including MRSA, Acinetobacter spp, Serratia marcesens and norovirus. In addition, contamination of the environment through contact with dirty hands and objects or airborne dispersal provides a potential reservoir of pathogens which could subsequently cause infection by indirect contacts.  Successful control of infection involves breaking the chain of transmission, for which it is necessary to understand both the mode of transmission as well as the nature of the pathogen and its behaviour in the environment.

Environmental Chamber Understanding this complex interaction between people, pathogens and the hospital environment is the driving force behind the research into infection control carried out by The Pathogen Control Engineering Research Group (PCE) in the School of Civil Engineering at the University of Leeds .

Research focuses on a number of key areas including:

  • Airborne infection risk
  • Tuberculosis control
  • Transmission and control of hospital acquired infection
  • Design of the healthcare environment
  • Pathogen control technologies including:
    • Ultraviolet (UV) radiation air disinfection
    • Negative air ionisation
  • Transport and Survival of microorganisms
  • Indoor air quality
  • Building airflows and ventilation technology

We also have a great deal of experience undertaking commercial research including testing microbial air cleaning devices in a room scale environment. More details can be found on the contract work page.

Inside Environmental Chamber

Our multi-discipline approach brings together investigators from a variety of backgrounds including public health engineering , fluid mechanics , building services engineering and microbiology . This has produced a team with the all-round strengths required to undertake rigorous research in the field of aerobiology and indoor air quality.