Volume 16, No. 1, January 2016, Pages 11-24 PDF(3.68 MB)
Size-Resolved Characterization of Particles and Fibers Released during Abrasion of Fiber-Reinforced Composite in a Workplace Influenced by Ambient Background Sources
Kirsten I. Kling1, Marcus Levin1,2, Alexander C.Ø. Jensen1, Keld A. Jensen1, Ismo K. Koponen1
1 National Research Centre for the Working Environment, 2100 Copenhagen, Denmark
2 Department of Nanotechnology, Technical University of Denmark, 2800 Kgs. Lyngby, Denmark
- Fibers were emitted from the sanding of a fiber reinforced composite.
- Fibers were also found on samplers installed on persons, as well in far field.
- The fibers in the respirable size range and are of glass and carbon.
- The production site is strongly influenced by one or more ambient background sources.
- We provide size-resolved chemical classification of emission particles and background.
We demonstrate the use of high- to low-resolution microscopy and particle chemical analysis during normal vacuum and cryo-conditions to identify the nature and relative abundances of process-generated particles and fibers from sanding of a glass and carbon fiber epoxy layer-composite in a workplace influenced by both indoor and ambient background sources. The study suggests that a proper exposure characterization requires multiple techniques covering wide size ranges to reach a conclusion. Besides a rise in number concentration due to release of particles during the sanding, a significant contribution of ambient particles to the background in the production facility was observed in the sub-micron size range. Fibers are posing a dominant exposure risk in the micron size range, with carbon fibers dominating in count.
Fiber mats; Particle identification; Epoxy; Production emission; HR-TEM.