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Size selective dustiness and exposure; simulated workplace comparisons

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Author: Brouwer, D.H. · Links, I.H.M. · Vreede, S.A.F. de · Christopher, Y.
Institution: TNO Kwaliteit van Leven
Source:Annals of Occupational Hygiene, 5, 50, 445-452
Identifier: 239332
doi: doi:10.1093/annhyg/mel015
Keywords: Health · Food and Chemical Risk Analysis · Dust exposure · Dustiness · Manual powder handling operations · Size-selective sampling · Calcium compounds · Dust control · Health hazards · Magnesium powder · Powder metals · Powders · Industrial hygiene · aluminum oxide · calcium carbonate · magnesium stearate · analytic method · comparative study · materials handling · occupational exposure · occupational health · sampling · simulation · workplace · Air Pollutants, Occupational · Aluminum Oxide · Calcium Carbonate · Dust · Humans · Inhalation Exposure · Materials Testing · Occupational Exposure · Particle Size · Stearic Acids


A simulated workplace study was conducted to investigate the relation between inhalation exposure and dustiness determined with a rotating drum dustiness tester. Three powders were used in the study, i.e. magnesium stearate, representing a very dusty powder, and aluminium oxide and calcium carbonate, representing low and very low dusty powders, respectively. Two scenarios of handling small volume of powders were included; sweeping/cleaning and scooping/weighing/adding. Size-selective dust exposure was assessed using MultiDust (dual-fraction) IOM and RespiCon® sampling heads. For the present operation scenarios, dustiness showed itself to be the major determinant of exposure and explained ∼70% of the exposure variances. The ratios of respirable and inhalable fractions as determined by dustiness tests were comparable with the ratios observed for exposure. The results emphasize the relevance of dustiness as a parameter to characterize substances according to potential for exposure. © The Author 2006. Published by Oxford University Press on behalf of the British Occupational Hygiene Society.