The AIRBODS research team

The AIRBODS research team

Covid-19 air quality study wins national industry award

A Loughborough University-led study that has created the first ever guidance on how to design and operate non-domestic buildings to minimise the spread of airborne viruses has won a national industry award.

The government funded AIRBODS (Airborne Infection Reduction through Building Operation and Design for SARS-CoV-2) project helped get large-scale events back up and running following the Covid-19 lockdown.

Last night (1 March) the study won the Learning and Development category at the Chartered Institution of Building Services Engineers (CIBSE) Building Performance Awards. The annual honours recognise the people, products and projects that demonstrate engineering excellence in the built environment.

The AIRBODS team, led by Loughborough’s Professor Malcolm Cook, was delighted its ground-breaking project was acknowledged by industry leaders. New detailed guidance developed from the team’s work – the largest ever study of non-domestic building air quality – will be released later this month.

Speaking about the award, Professor Cook said: “It has been a privilege to lead such a committed team of researchers who worked tirelessly during the pandemic to collect extensive data and run bespoke computer simulations.

“The work has substantially increased our understanding of indoor air quality which has become such a key focus for our nation's health and wellbeing. This award recognises this commitment and contribution to knowledge.”

The AIRBODS project was led by Loughborough University, in partnership with University College London, the University of Cambridge, the University of Nottingham, the University of Sheffield, London South Bank University and Wirth Research.

Notes for editors

Press release reference number: PR 23/31

Loughborough is one of the country’s leading universities, with an international reputation for research that matters, excellence in teaching, strong links with industry, and unrivalled achievement in sport and its underpinning academic disciplines.

It has been awarded five stars in the independent QS Stars university rating scheme, named the best university in the world for sports-related subjects in the 2022 QS World University Rankings – the sixth year running – and University of the Year for Sport by The Times and Sunday Times University Guide 2022.

Loughborough is ranked 7th in The UK Complete University Guide 2023, 10th in the Guardian University League Table 2023 and 11th in the Times and Sunday Times Good University Guide 2023.

Loughborough is consistently ranked in the top twenty of UK universities in the Times Higher Education’s ‘table of tables’, and in the Research Excellence Framework (REF) 2021 over 90% of its research was rated as ‘world-leading’ or ‘internationally-excellent’. In recognition of its contribution to the sector, Loughborough has been awarded seven Queen's Anniversary Prizes

The Loughborough University London campus is based on the Queen Elizabeth Olympic Park and offers postgraduate and executive-level education, as well as research and enterprise opportunities. It is home to influential thought leaders, pioneering researchers and creative innovators who provide students with the highest quality of teaching and the very latest in modern thinking.