Q&A: Peter Fisher discusses JASON report on reopening university laboratories

Wednesday, July 29, 2020 - 23:10 in Physics & Chemistry

What will it take for research universities across the U.S. to safely open their labs? That’s the subject of a recently released report by JASON, an independent group of scientists who advise the U.S. government about science and technology, in association with the MITRE Corporation. The report was led by Peter Fisher, professor and head of MIT’s Department of Physics, who is a JASON member. (MIT has separately examined the question, and began a phased ramp-up of lab research in June; Fisher participated in MIT reopening efforts as well.) MIT News talked with Fisher about the JASON report. Q: What are the main things the JASON report recommends to universities trying to reopen labs? A: Probably the top-level things are just mask-wearing, handwashing, and social distancing. Those are three things that everybody can do. And people know this, but the report looks in exhaustive detail at why those things are important —...

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