GEELONG, Australia – Coronavirus can survive on money, phones and stainless steel for up to 28 days, according to a new study out of Australia.
Researchers at the Australian Centre for Disease Preparedness (ACDP) found this can happen if the items are stored in cool and dark conditions.
Experts say 68-degrees Fahrenheit is the perfect temperature for the virus to thrive on smooth surfaces, like glass, steel and plastic. The virus doesn’t do as well on porous surfaces, such as cotton.
The virus only survived for a week when the temperature went up to 86-degrees Fahrenheit.
Dr. Debbie Eagles, the Deputy Director of ACDP, says the results of the study reinforce the need for good practices, like regular handwashing and cleaning surfaces.
“At 20 degrees Celsius, which is about room temperature, we found that the virus was extremely robust, surviving for 28 days on smooth surfaces such as glass found on mobile phone screens and plastic banknotes,” said Eagles. “For context, similar experiments for Influenza A have found that it survived on surfaces for 17 days, which highlights just how resilient SARS-CoV-2 is.”
Experts say the research may help explain the apparent persistence and spread of the virus in cool environments with high lipid or protein contamination, such as meat processing facilities, and how we might better address that risk.