German scientists are putting on a concert to find out how COVID-19 spreads at shows
The concert industry has been at a standstill since COVID-19, and many people -- as much as they miss going to shows -- don't seem in a massive hurry to go back to venues till there's a vaccine. A group of German scientists, however, are trying to get 4200 healthy people to attend a show in August with the express goal of finding out just how the coronavirus might spread in a concert setting.
The project is called Restart-19 and will happen August 22 in Leipzig with popular German singer Tim Bendzko as the day's entertainment. So far over 1000 volunteers -- all between the ages of 18 and 50 who have tested negative to the coronavirus -- have registered through the project's website. It should be noted that this is a simulation to assess risk, and the volunteers (who will be tested before being allowed to participate) are not being subjected to any viruses.
Volunteers, who will all be wearing masks, will be given wearable devices that transmit data every five seconds, including proximity to other devices and location within the venue. They'll also be given bottles of fluorescent disinfectant so that researchers can see what surfaces are being touched and "become particularly dangerous." There will also be a fog machine going to help visualize the potential spread of the virus through aerosols.
Stefan Moritz, who is heading up the experiment, told The Guardian: "We are trying to find out if there could be a middle way between the old and the new normal that would allow organizers to fit enough people into a concert venue to not make a loss."
The experiment will cost around €990,000 and be paid for by the German states Saxony and Saxony-Anhalt, as well as the Martin Luther University of Halle-Wittenberg.
Tim Bendzko has already played a few drive-in shows throughout Europe.
Learn more at the Restart-19 website.