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Comparison of Three Real-Time Measurement Methods for Airborne Ultrafine Particles in the Silicon Alloy Industry

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ABSTRACT

The aim of this study was to compare the applicability and the correlation between three commercially available instruments capable of detection, quantification, and characterization of ultrafine airborne particulate matter in the industrial setting of a tapping area in a silicon alloy production plant. The number concentration of ultrafine particles was evaluated using an Electric Low Pressure Impactor (ELPITM), a Fast Mobility Particle Sizer (FMPSTM), and a Condensation Particle Counter (CPC). The results are discussed in terms of particle size distribution and temporal variations linked to process operations. The instruments show excellent temporal covariation and the correlation between the FMPS and ELPI is good. The advantage of the FMPS is the excellent time- and size resolution of the results. The main advantage of the ELPI is the possibility to collect size-fractionated samples of the dust for subsequent analysis by, for example, electron microscopy. The CPC does not provide information about the particle size distribution and its correlation to the other two instruments is somewhat poor. Nonetheless, the CPC gives basic, real-time information about the ultrafine particle concentration and can therefore be used for source identification.

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Transmission electron micrographs of ultrafine PM collected by the ELPI.
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ijerph-13-00871-f005: Transmission electron micrographs of ultrafine PM collected by the ELPI.

Mentions: Figure 5 shows transmission electron micrographs of the PM collected by the ELPI in the second smallest size fraction (Dp 28–54 nm). In Figure 5 (left), the magnification is relatively coarse and the holey carbon film of the sample holder is seen as the egg-shaped hole. The particles collected on the film are agglomerates of different shapes and consist of amorphous silica, very similar to findings reported by others [2,3,24,25]. As seen in Figure 5 (right), with larger magnification, the protoparticles are spheres and the transitions between the smallest protoparticles appear blurred, which indicate that they are undergoing a sintering/coalescing process. These agglomerates are therefore likely to be primary agglomerates.


Comparison of Three Real-Time Measurement Methods for Airborne Ultrafine Particles in the Silicon Alloy Industry
Transmission electron micrographs of ultrafine PM collected by the ELPI.
© Copyright Policy
Related In: Results  -  Collection

License
Show All Figures
getmorefigures.php?uid=PMC5036704&req=5

ijerph-13-00871-f005: Transmission electron micrographs of ultrafine PM collected by the ELPI.
Mentions: Figure 5 shows transmission electron micrographs of the PM collected by the ELPI in the second smallest size fraction (Dp 28–54 nm). In Figure 5 (left), the magnification is relatively coarse and the holey carbon film of the sample holder is seen as the egg-shaped hole. The particles collected on the film are agglomerates of different shapes and consist of amorphous silica, very similar to findings reported by others [2,3,24,25]. As seen in Figure 5 (right), with larger magnification, the protoparticles are spheres and the transitions between the smallest protoparticles appear blurred, which indicate that they are undergoing a sintering/coalescing process. These agglomerates are therefore likely to be primary agglomerates.

View Article: PubMed Central - PubMed

ABSTRACT

The aim of this study was to compare the applicability and the correlation between three commercially available instruments capable of detection, quantification, and characterization of ultrafine airborne particulate matter in the industrial setting of a tapping area in a silicon alloy production plant. The number concentration of ultrafine particles was evaluated using an Electric Low Pressure Impactor (ELPITM), a Fast Mobility Particle Sizer (FMPSTM), and a Condensation Particle Counter (CPC). The results are discussed in terms of particle size distribution and temporal variations linked to process operations. The instruments show excellent temporal covariation and the correlation between the FMPS and ELPI is good. The advantage of the FMPS is the excellent time- and size resolution of the results. The main advantage of the ELPI is the possibility to collect size-fractionated samples of the dust for subsequent analysis by, for example, electron microscopy. The CPC does not provide information about the particle size distribution and its correlation to the other two instruments is somewhat poor. Nonetheless, the CPC gives basic, real-time information about the ultrafine particle concentration and can therefore be used for source identification.

No MeSH data available.


Related in: MedlinePlus