Using a high-speed camera and volunteers standing against a black backdrop, scientists recorded sneezes. Their goal was to better understand what happens when a person sneezes. The video, which was recorded at 1000 frames per second, showed that the motion and particle distribution of sneezes are more complicated than previously known.
For example, the particles in cloud range in size and travel through the air in swirls and eddies. The biggest surprise was the discovery that the finest droplets stayed suspended in the air for up to several minutes and could travel as far as several feet, which shows the potential for a sick person to infect other people in the room. Credit: New England Journal of Medicine (2016). DOI: 10.1056/NEJMicm1501197