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Aerosol emission in professional singing of classical music

Mürbe, Dirk; Kriegel, Martin; Lange, Julia; Rotheudt, Hansjörg; Fleischer, Mario

In this study, emission rates of aerosols emitted by professional singers were measured with a laser particle counter under cleanroom conditions. The emission rates during singing varied between 753 and 6093 particles/sec with a median of 1537 particles/sec. Emission rates for singing were compared with data for breathing and speaking. Significantly higher emission rates were found for singing. The emission enhancements between singing and speaking were between 4.0 and 99.5 with a median of 17.4, largely due to higher sound pressure levels when singing. Further, significant effects of vocal loudness were found, whereas there were no significant differences between the investigated voice classifications. The present study supports the efforts to improve the risk management in cases of possible aerogenic virus transmission, especially for choir singing.
Published in: Scientific Reports, 10.1038/s41598-021-93281-x, Springer Nature