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Exposure estimation

Why is it so important to define an exposure assessment methodology?

In 2016, different types of professional exposures to nanoparticles concern some 2 millions of people worldwide. The compliance to the precautionary principle and the labor regulation related to dangerous products forces the employer to maintain the personnel exposure at as low a level as possible. But how can we express exposure threshold values? What are current exposure recommendation proposals?

333-animationWorkshop type and activity phases impact on exposure estimation.

Cartoons Episode 5

An estimation of the exposure is performed in two steps:

  • analysis of the work processes and activities from the reception of raw material through to the storage of the final products and the elimination of wastes, with an analysis of the exposure path and exposure risks of the personnel for each stage,
  • possible implementation of a strategy to quantify exposure, mainly with dust accumulation measures in work areas.

Remember that the dangerousness of nanoparticle depends on their size, shape, concentration, chemical composition, implementation mode… but also on their propensity to disperse in the ecosystem which depends on the particle state:

  • free in the air in aerosol form (powder): high propensity,
  • in solution in a liquid (colloïdal): medium propensity,
  • fixed on a surface: wire or tubes (1D) or layers (2D): low propensity,
  • integrated in a solid matrix (3D): very low propensity.