Immediately Dangerous to Life or Health Concentrations (IDLH)
CAS number: 509–14–8
NIOSH REL: 1 ppm (8 mg/m3) TWA
Current OSHA PEL: 1 ppm (8 mg/m3) TWA
1989 OSHA PEL: Same as current PEL
1993-1994 ACGIH TLV: 0.005 ppm (0.04 mg/m3) TWA, A2
Description of substance: Colorless to pale-yellow liquid or solid (below 57°F) with a pungent odor.
LEL :. . Unknown
Original (SCP) IDLH: 5 ppm
Basis for original (SCP) IDLH: The chosen IDLH is based on the statement by AIHA  that concentrations above 5 ppm may cause irreversible lung and systemic damage [Koelsch 1917]. Patty  reported that a cat exposed to 10 ppm for 20 minutes died within 10 days [Flury and Zernik 1931], and 5 cats exposed to 7 to 25 ppm for periods ranging from 2.5 to 5 hours died within 1 to 5.5 hours [Sievers et al. 1947].
Short-term exposure guidelines: None developed
ACUTE TOXICITY DATA:
Lethal concentration data:
Kinkead et al. 1977
|6.5 hr |
|78 ppm (2.35) |
36 ppm (2.0)
87 ppm (0.87)
108 ppm (2.0)
|7.8 ppm |
Other animal data: Cats exposed to 10 ppm for 20 min died within ten days [Flury and Zernik 1931]. It has been reported that cats exposed to 7 to 25 ppm for periods ranging from 2.5 to 5 hours died within 1 to 5.5 hours [Sievers et al. 1947].
Human data: It has been stated that concentrations above
5 ppm may cause irreversible lung and systemic damage [Koelsch
|Revised IDLH: 4 ppm
Basis for revised IDLH: Based on acute inhalation toxicity data in humans [Koelsch 1917] and animals [Horn 1953; Kinkead et al. 1977], the revised IDLH for tetranitromethane is 4 ppm.
1. AIHA . Tetranitromethane. In: Hygienic guide series. Am Ind Hyg Assoc J 25:513-515.
2. Flury F, Zernik F . Schädliche gase dämpfe, nebel, rauch- und staubarten. Berlin, Germany: Verlag von Julius Springer, p. 417 (in German).
3. Horn HJ . Chemical Corps Medical Laboratories Contract Report No. 20.
4. Kinkead ER, MacEwen JD, Haun CC, Vernot EH, Dacre JC . Toxic hazards evaluation of five atmospheric pollutants from Army ammunition plants. Wright-Patterson Air Force Base, OH: Air Force Systems Command, Aerospace Medical Division, Aerospace Medical Research Laboratory Technical Report AMRL-TR-77-25.
5. Koelsch F . Die giftwirkung des tetranitromethane. Gewerbehygiene 5:185 (in German). [From AIHA . Tetranitromethane. In: Hygienic guide series. Am Ind Hyg Assoc J 25:513-515.]
6. Marhold J . Prehled Prumyslove Toxikologie, Organicke Latky. Prague, Czechoslovakia: Avicenum, p. 403 (in Czechoslovakian).
7. Patty FA, ed. . Industrial hygiene and toxicology. 2nd rev. ed. Vol. II. Toxicology. New York, NY: Interscience Publishers, Inc., p. 2075.
8. Sievers RF, Rushing E, Gay H, Monaco AR . Toxic effects of tetranitromethane, a contaminant in crude TNT. Public Health Rep 62:1054-1058.
9. USAF . Proceedings of the 8th annual conference on environmental toxicology. Wright-Patterson Air Force Base, OH: Air Force Systems Command, Aerospace Medical Division, Aerospace Medical Research Technical Report, AMRL-TR-77-97.
- National Institute for Occupational Safety and Health (NIOSH)
- Centers for Disease Control and Prevention
TTY: (888) 232-6348
- New Hours of Operation
- Contact CDC-INFO