Evaluation of environmental filtration control of engineered nanoparticles using the Harvard Versatile Engineered Nanomaterial Generation System (VENGES)

  • Candace S.-J. Tsai
  • Manuel E. Echevarría-Vega
  • Georgios A. Sotiriou
  • Christopher Santeufemio
  • Daniel Schmidt
  • Philip Demokritou
  • Michael Ellenbecker
Perspectives
Part of the following topical collections:
  1. Nanotechnology, Occupational and Environmental Health

Abstract

Applying engineering controls to airborne engineered nanoparticles (ENPs) is critical to prevent environmental releases and worker exposure. This study evaluated the effectiveness of two air sampling and six air cleaning fabric filters at collecting ENPs using industrially relevant flame-made engineered nanoparticles generated using a versatile engineered nanomaterial generation system (VENGES), recently designed and constructed at Harvard University. VENGES has the ability to generate metal and metal oxide exposure atmospheres while controlling important particle properties such as primary particle size, aerosol size distribution, and agglomeration state. For this study, amorphous SiO2 ENPs with a 15.4 nm primary particle size were generated and diluted with HEPA-filtered air. The aerosol was passed through the filter samples at two different filtration face velocities (2.3 and 3.5 m/min). Particle concentrations as a function of particle size were measured upstream and downstream of the filters using a specially designed filter test system to evaluate filtration efficiency. Real time instruments (FMPS and APS) were used to measure particle concentration for diameters from 5 to 20,000 nm. Membrane-coated fabric filters were found to have enhanced nanoparticle collection efficiency by 20–46 % points compared to non-coated fabric and could provide collection efficiency above 95 %.

Keywords

Engineered nanoparticles Aerosol emission Filter Engineering control Silica Environmental and health effects 

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Copyright information

© Springer Science+Business Media B.V. 2012

Authors and Affiliations

  • Candace S.-J. Tsai
    • 1
  • Manuel E. Echevarría-Vega
    • 2
  • Georgios A. Sotiriou
    • 3
  • Christopher Santeufemio
    • 4
  • Daniel Schmidt
    • 5
  • Philip Demokritou
    • 6
  • Michael Ellenbecker
    • 1
  1. 1.NSF Center for High-rate Nanomanufacturing (CHN)University of Massachusetts LowellLowellUSA
  2. 2.Industrial Engineering DepartmentUniversity of Puerto Rico MayagüezMayagüezUSA
  3. 3.Particle Technology Laboratory, Department of Mechanical and Process EngineeringSwiss Federal Institute of Technology (ETH Zurich)ZurichSwitzerland
  4. 4.Campus Materials Characterization LaboratoryUniversity of Massachusetts LowellLowellUSA
  5. 5.Department of Plastic EngineeringUniversity of Massachusetts LowellLowellUSA
  6. 6.Center for Nanotechnology and Nanotoxicology at the Harvard School of Public HealthBostonUSA

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