Featured Research

from universities, journals, and other organizations

Nanotech Protection: Current Safety Equipment May Not Be Adequate

Date:
October 16, 2009
Source:
Inderscience Publishers
Summary:
Canadian engineers suggest that research is needed into the risks associated with the growing field of nanotechnology manufacture so that appropriate protective equipment can be developed urgently.

Writing in a forthcoming issue of the International Journal of Nanotechnology, Canadian engineers suggest that research is needed into the risks associated with the growing field of nanotechnology manufacture so that appropriate protective equipment can be developed urgently.

Related Articles


Patricia Dolez of the Department of Mechanical Engineering, at the École de technologie supérieure, in Montréal and colleagues point out that skin is not an impervious membrane. This is the reason that protective clothing and gloves, in addition to respirators, are often an essential and common sight in the chemical industry. However, they wonder if standard protection against chemical risks is enough for workers who are handling nanomaterials.

According to the most recent estimates from the U.S. National Science Foundation, the nanotechnology market could reach as much as $1 trillion by 2011/2012. This, says Dolez, corresponds to about 2 million workers involved in nano-related activities. She adds that it has already been shown that nanoparticles may affect biological activity through oxidative stress at the cellular and molecular levels, although these effects are yet to be manifest as health problems among workers.

The anticipated hazards associated with this incredibly diverse range of substances falling under the general and broad tag of "nanomaterials" remain largely unknown. And, some scientists have suggested that we are vigilant to emerging health problems associated with nanomaterials. The U.S. government recently updated its National Nanotechnology Initiative strategic plan to highlight the need for an assessment of nanomaterials toxicity before production begins.

Dolez and colleagues suggest that as this area of manufacturing grows it would be prudent to develop adequate workplace protection sooner, rather than later. Indeed, those workers most likely to be exposed to nanomaterials will be working in cleaning, bagging and formulation activities as well as surface functionalisation of nanoparticles.

They explain that current regulations and standards testing for protective clothing and equipment are almost devoid of references to nanomaterials specifically. Moreover, although some researchers have concluded that certified respirators offer an appropriate level of protection against nanoparticles, there remain large uncertainties, for example due to the increased potential of leaks at face seal because of the very small size of nanoparticles, a few billionths of a meter.


Story Source:

The above story is based on materials provided by Inderscience Publishers. Note: Materials may be edited for content and length.


Cite This Page:

Inderscience Publishers. "Nanotech Protection: Current Safety Equipment May Not Be Adequate." ScienceDaily. ScienceDaily, 16 October 2009. <www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2009/10/091013112524.htm>.
Inderscience Publishers. (2009, October 16). Nanotech Protection: Current Safety Equipment May Not Be Adequate. ScienceDaily. Retrieved October 25, 2014 from www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2009/10/091013112524.htm
Inderscience Publishers. "Nanotech Protection: Current Safety Equipment May Not Be Adequate." ScienceDaily. www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2009/10/091013112524.htm (accessed October 25, 2014).

Share This



More Matter & Energy News

Saturday, October 25, 2014

Featured Research

from universities, journals, and other organizations


Featured Videos

from AP, Reuters, AFP, and other news services

IKEA Desk Converts From Standing to Sitting With One Button

IKEA Desk Converts From Standing to Sitting With One Button

Buzz60 (Oct. 24, 2014) — IKEA is out with a new convertible desk that can convert from a sitting desk to a standing one with just the push of a button. Jen Markham explains. Video provided by Buzz60
Powered by NewsLook.com
Ebola Protective Suits Being Made in China

Ebola Protective Suits Being Made in China

AFP (Oct. 24, 2014) — A factory in China is busy making Ebola protective suits for healthcare workers and others fighting the spread of the virus. Duration: 00:38 Video provided by AFP
Powered by NewsLook.com
Real-Life Transformer Robot Walks, Then Folds Into a Car

Real-Life Transformer Robot Walks, Then Folds Into a Car

Buzz60 (Oct. 24, 2014) — Brave Robotics and Asratec teamed with original Transformers toy company Tomy to create a functional 5-foot-tall humanoid robot that can march and fold itself into a 3-foot-long sports car. Jen Markham has the story. Video provided by Buzz60
Powered by NewsLook.com
Police Testing New Gunfire Tracking Technology

Police Testing New Gunfire Tracking Technology

AP (Oct. 24, 2014) — A California-based startup has designed new law enforcement technology that aims to automatically alert dispatch when an officer's gun is unholstered and fired. Two law enforcement agencies are currently testing the technology. (Oct. 24) Video provided by AP
Powered by NewsLook.com

Search ScienceDaily

Number of stories in archives: 140,361

Find with keyword(s):
 
Enter a keyword or phrase to search ScienceDaily for related topics and research stories.

Save/Print:
Share:  

Breaking News:

Strange & Offbeat Stories

 

Space & Time

Matter & Energy

Computers & Math

In Other News

... from NewsDaily.com

Science News

Health News

Environment News

Technology News



Save/Print:
Share:  

Free Subscriptions


Get the latest science news with ScienceDaily's free email newsletters, updated daily and weekly. Or view hourly updated newsfeeds in your RSS reader:

Get Social & Mobile


Keep up to date with the latest news from ScienceDaily via social networks and mobile apps:

Have Feedback?


Tell us what you think of ScienceDaily -- we welcome both positive and negative comments. Have any problems using the site? Questions?
Mobile iPhone Android Web
Follow Facebook Twitter Google+
Subscribe RSS Feeds Email Newsletters
Latest Headlines Health & Medicine Mind & Brain Space & Time Matter & Energy Computers & Math Plants & Animals Earth & Climate Fossils & Ruins