Ultra-Clean-Air (UCA) operating theatres aim to minimise surgical instrument contamination and wound infection through high flow rates of ultra-clean air, reducing the presence of Microbe Carrying Particles (MCPs). This study investigates the airflow patterns and ventilation characteristics of a UCA operating theatre (OT) under standard ventilation system operating conditions, considering both empty and partially occupied scenarios. Utilising a precise computational model, quasi-Direct Numerical Simulations (qDNS) were conducted to delineate flow velocity profiles, energy spectra, distributions of turbulent kinetic energy, energy dissipation rate, local Kolmogorov scales, and pressure-based coherent structures. These results were also complemented by a tracer gas decay analysis following ASHRAE standard guidelines. Simulations showed that contrary to the intended laminar regime, the OT’s geometry inherently fosters a predominantly turbulent airflow, sustained until evacuation through the exhaust vents, and facilitating recirculation zones irrespective of occupancy level. Notably, the occupied scenario demonstrated superior ventilation efficiency, a phenomenon attributed to enhanced kinetic energy induced by the additional obstructions. The findings underscore the critical role of UCA-OT design in mitigating MCP dissemination, highlighting the potential to augment the design to optimise airflow across a broader theatre spectrum, thereby diminishing recirculation zones and consequently reducing the propensity for Surgical Site Infections (SSIs). The study advocates for design refinements to harness the turbulent dynamics beneficially, steering towards a safer surgical environment.

Analysis of the airflow features and ventilation efficiency of an Ultra-Clean-Air operating theatre by qDNS simulations and experimental validation / Duque-Daza, Carlos A.; Murillo-Rincón, Jairo; Espinosa-Moreno, Andrés S.; Alberini, Federico; Alexiadis, Alessio; Garzón-Alvarado, Diego A.; Thomas, Andrew M.C.; Simmons, Mark J.H.. - In: BUILDING AND ENVIRONMENT. - ISSN 0360-1323. - ELETTRONICO. - 256:(2024), pp. 111444.1-111444.20. [10.1016/j.buildenv.2024.111444]

Analysis of the airflow features and ventilation efficiency of an Ultra-Clean-Air operating theatre by qDNS simulations and experimental validation

Murillo-Rincón, Jairo;Alberini, Federico;
2024

Abstract

Ultra-Clean-Air (UCA) operating theatres aim to minimise surgical instrument contamination and wound infection through high flow rates of ultra-clean air, reducing the presence of Microbe Carrying Particles (MCPs). This study investigates the airflow patterns and ventilation characteristics of a UCA operating theatre (OT) under standard ventilation system operating conditions, considering both empty and partially occupied scenarios. Utilising a precise computational model, quasi-Direct Numerical Simulations (qDNS) were conducted to delineate flow velocity profiles, energy spectra, distributions of turbulent kinetic energy, energy dissipation rate, local Kolmogorov scales, and pressure-based coherent structures. These results were also complemented by a tracer gas decay analysis following ASHRAE standard guidelines. Simulations showed that contrary to the intended laminar regime, the OT’s geometry inherently fosters a predominantly turbulent airflow, sustained until evacuation through the exhaust vents, and facilitating recirculation zones irrespective of occupancy level. Notably, the occupied scenario demonstrated superior ventilation efficiency, a phenomenon attributed to enhanced kinetic energy induced by the additional obstructions. The findings underscore the critical role of UCA-OT design in mitigating MCP dissemination, highlighting the potential to augment the design to optimise airflow across a broader theatre spectrum, thereby diminishing recirculation zones and consequently reducing the propensity for Surgical Site Infections (SSIs). The study advocates for design refinements to harness the turbulent dynamics beneficially, steering towards a safer surgical environment.
2024
Analysis of the airflow features and ventilation efficiency of an Ultra-Clean-Air operating theatre by qDNS simulations and experimental validation / Duque-Daza, Carlos A.; Murillo-Rincón, Jairo; Espinosa-Moreno, Andrés S.; Alberini, Federico; Alexiadis, Alessio; Garzón-Alvarado, Diego A.; Thomas, Andrew M.C.; Simmons, Mark J.H.. - In: BUILDING AND ENVIRONMENT. - ISSN 0360-1323. - ELETTRONICO. - 256:(2024), pp. 111444.1-111444.20. [10.1016/j.buildenv.2024.111444]
Duque-Daza, Carlos A.; Murillo-Rincón, Jairo; Espinosa-Moreno, Andrés S.; Alberini, Federico; Alexiadis, Alessio; Garzón-Alvarado, Diego A.; Thomas, Andrew M.C.; Simmons, Mark J.H.
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Utilizza questo identificativo per citare o creare un link a questo documento: https://hdl.handle.net/11585/967411
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