Limited data are available regarding occupational exposure assessment to nano-sized titanium dioxide (nano-TiO2). The objective of this study is to assess the occupational exposure of workers engaged in the application of nano-TiO2 onto concrete building materials, by means of a multi-metric approach (mean diameter, number, mass and surface area concentrations). The measurement design consists of the combined use of (i) direct-reading instruments to evaluate the total particle number concentrations relative to the background concentration and the mean size-dependent characteristics of particles (mean diameter and surface area concentration) and to estimate the 8-h time-weighted average (8-h TWA) exposure to nano-TiO2 for workers involved in different working tasks; and (ii) filter-based air sampling, used for the determination of size-resolved particle mass concentrations. A further estimation was performed to obtain the mean 8-h TWA exposure values expressed as mass concentrations (µg nano-TiO2/m3). The multi-metric characterization of occupational exposure to nano-TiO2 was significantly different both for different work environments and for each work task. Generally, workers were exposed to engineered nanoparticles (ENPs; <100 nm) mean levels lower than the recommended reference values and proposed occupational exposure limits (40,000 particle/cm3; 300 µg/m3) and relevant exposures to peak concentration were not likely to be expected. The estimated 8-h TWA exposure showed differences between the unexposed and exposed subjects. For these last, further differences were defined between operators involved in different work tasks. This study provides information on nano-TiO2 number and mass concentration, size distribution, particles diameter and surface area concentrations, which were used to obtain work shift-averaged exposures.
|Titolo:||Titanium dioxide nanoparticles: occupational exposure assessment in the photocatalytic paving production|
|Data di pubblicazione:||2016|
|Appare nelle tipologie:||Articolo su Rivista|