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Nitrogen trifluoride

May 1994
Immediately Dangerous to Life or Health Concentrations (IDLH)

CAS number: 7783–54–2

NIOSH REL: 10 ppm (29 mg/m3) TWA

1989 OSHA PEL: Same as current PEL

Current OSHA PEL: 10 ppm (29 mg/m3) TWA

1993-1994 ACGIH TLV: 10 ppm (29 mg/m3) TWA

Description of substance: Colorless gas with a moldy odor.

LEL: . Nonflammable Gas

Original (SCP) IDLH: 2,000 ppm

Basis for original (SCP) IDLH: The chosen IDLH is based on the mouse 4-hour LC50 of 2,000 ppm cited by Deichmann and Gerarde [1969]. Deichmann and Gerarde [1969] also stated that nitrogen trifluoride is a pulmonary irritant comparable in toxicity to the oxides of nitrogen.

Short-term exposure guidelines: None developed


Lethal concentration data:

Species Reference LC50




Time Adjusted 0.5-hr


Derived value
Mouse Deichmann & Gerarde 1969 2,000 ----- 4 hr 4,000 ppm (2.0) 400 ppm
Dog MacEwen & Vernot 1969 9,600 ----- 1 hr 12,000 ppm (1.25) 1,200 ppm
Monkey MacEwen & Vernot 1969 7,500 ----- 1 hr 9,375 ppm (1.25) 938 ppm
Rat Vernot et al. 1973 6,700 ----- 1 hr 8,375 ppm (1.25) 838 ppm
Mouse Vernot et al. 1973 7,500 ----- 1 hr 9,375 ppm (1.25) 938 ppm

Human data: None relevant for use in determining the revised IDLH.

Revised IDLH: 1,000 ppm

Basis for revised IDLH: The revised IDLH for nitrogen trifluoride is 1,000 ppm based on acute inhalation toxicity data in animals [MacEwen and Vernot 1969; Vernot et al. 1973].


1. Deichmann WB, Gerarde HW [1969]. Nitrogen trifluoride. In: Toxicology of drugs and chemicals. New York, NY: Academic Press, Inc., p. 427.

2. MacEwen JD, Vernot EH [1969]. Toxic Hazards Research Unit annual technical report: 1969. Wright-Patterson Air Force Base, OH: Aerospace Medical Research Laboratory, Report AMRL-TR-69-84, pp. 1-49.

3. Vernot EH, Haun CC, MacEwen JD, Egan GF [1973]. Acute inhalation toxicology and proposed emergency exposure limits of nitrogen trifluoride. Toxicol Appl Pharmacol 26:1-13.