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Volume 13, No. 3, June 2013, Pages 1145-1150 PDF(644 KB)  
doi: 10.4209/aaqr.2012.04.0094   

Asbestos Imaging and Detection with Differential Interference Contrast Microscopy

Iuliia Zarubiieva1, Gi Byoung Hwang1, Ji Sok Lee1, Gwi-Nam Bae1, Yoo-Mi Oh2, Sun-Woo Park2, Taik Jin Lee1, Hyuk Jae Lee1, Deok Ha Woo1, Seok Lee1, Myoung-Ock Cho3, Jung Kyung Kim3, Seong Chan Jun4, Jae Hun Kim1

1 Sensor System Research Center, Korea Institute of Science and Technology (KIST), Hwarangno 14-gil 5, Seongbuk-gu, Seoul 136-791, Korea
2 Department of Electrical and Computer Engineering, University of Seoul, Seoul 130-743, Korea
3 School of Mechanical Engineering, Kookmin University, Seoul 136-702, Korea
4 School of Mechanical Engineering, Yonsei University, Seoul 120-749, Korea




This study presents a new method for imaging and counting the concentration of asbestos fibers. This approach combines the principle of differential interference contrast (DIC) microscopy for imaging fibers with an imaging program to automatically assess their concentration. Asbestos is typically detected by optical microscopy or electron microscopy methods. While optical microscopy techniques (such as phase contrast microscopy and polarized light microscopy) are fast and inexpensive, they cannot ensure a thorough examination due to their low resolutions. In contrast, electron microscopy methods (such as transmission electron microscopy and scanning electron microscopy) provide high resolutions images, but are expensive and the related technology is not widely available.
    This work thus proposes the DIC method for detecting asbestos fibers, as it can overcome many of the disadvantages of existing methods. It also has good potential for use in portable measuring devices, which can detect asbestos right at the location of possible exposure.



Keywords: Asbestos fibers; Differential Interference Contrast microscopy; Environmental monitoring.



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