Respiratory Aerosol Meter – Fastest detection of particles in breathing air in the size range of viruses like Covid-19




Respiratory Aerosol Meter – Fastest detection of particles in breathing air in the size range of viruses like Covid-19

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Viruses such as Covid-19 or flu viruses spread as aerosols and infect other people through the respiratory tract.

Superspreaders or superemitters are people who exhale a particularly high number of pathogens. They are therefore considered to be particularly infectious. The Resp-Aer-Meter helps to identify superspreaders and initiate appropriate safety measures.


Palas_RespAerMeter_2020-11_FINAL.png Fig. 1: Resp-Aer-Meter / How it works

To analyze the risk of infection, the test person inhales and exhales into the measuring device for approx. 30 seconds.

The exhaled air is sucked in by the Resp-Aer-Meter. Before the measurement, the aspirated particles are conditioned in the aerosol conditioning area in order to differentiate between pure droplets (e.g. spit or water droplets) and potentially infectious particles (bacteria, viruses = solid).

To measure the particle size and concentration, the Resp-Aer-Meter works with the white light LED sensor of the Fidas® system, which has proven itself in environmental measurements. Even the smallest particles from 150 nm are recorded individually and their size and number are detected online.

More about the spread of virus-carrying aerosols by superspreaders can be found here .

Exemplary study

The Resp-Aer-Meter was the subject of a scientific study involving over 300 subjects. Approximately 120 people were infected with Covid-19. The study investigated the extent to which the Resp-Aer-Meter could detect infected individuals.The values are shown here in an ROC curve, with sensitivity (true positive rate) on the y-axis and specificity (false positive rate) on the x-axis. The area under curve (AUC) of the ROC curve is a measure of how well the exhaled aerosols perform as an indicator of respiratory infection (COVID-19 in this case).

2111_PA_Grafiken_Seite 03_EN.png (2) Fig. 2: ROC curve

  • Exhaled aerosols are very suitable for detecting patients with respiratory diseases: This is made clear by the high AUC of 0.8951.
  • The steep slope of the ROC curve shows that the particle count is very well suited to distinguish infected from non-infected persons.
  • A threshold value enables a quick, clear statement as to whether a person is infected (yes/no statement comparable to a PCR test).
  • Furthermore, an output of the Resp-Aer-Meter is an individual false positive rate.

Find here the the published study "Aerosol measurement identifies SARS-CoV 2 PCR positive adults compared with healthy controls" at Frankfurt University Hospital (

Further publications using the Resp-Aer-Meter can be found here:


  • So-called "superemitters" can be identified in 30s thanks to a high number of particles
  • Fast differentiation between infectious and less infectious Covid-19 carriers
  • Measurement of the aerosol concentration and aerosol size in exhaled air
  • Detection of particles from 145 nm to 10 µm
  • Highest resolution, especially in the virus size range from approx. 145 nm to 1 µm
  • Immediate evaluation and documentation of the measurement result


Measuring principle Optical light-scattering
Measurement range (number CN) 0 – 20,000 particles/cm³
Measurement range (size) 0.15 – 10 µm
Volume flow 9.5 l/min
Data acquisition Digital, 20 MHz processor, 256 raw data channels
Power consumption Approx. 200 W
User interface Touchscreen, 800 • 480 pixel, 7" (17.78 cm)


  • Detection of potential superemitters (Covid-19, flu virus)
    • in industry, e.g. meat processing, automotive, chemistry
    • in airports, train stations, public buildings
    • at events such as trade fairs and seminars
    • in hospitals and nursing homes


Brief Description
Brief product description in two-pages as PDF
Product Description
Detailed product description as PDF
Palas Video Resp-Aer-Meter
Video (329 MByte)


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