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Electromyographic and discomfort analysis of confined-space shipyard welding processes.

Authors
Lowe-BD; Wurzelbacher-SJ; Shulman-SA; Hudock-SD
Source
Appl Ergon 2001 Jun; 32(3):255-269
NIOSHTIC No.
20021797
Abstract
This study examined muscle fatigue and discomfort in a confined-space welding operation at a shipyard. Surface electromyography (SEMG) was recorded from seven upper extremity and torso muscles of welders welding in a mock-up of the work environment. Following spectral transform of the SEMG data the percentage of the total signal power in the 10-30 Hz frequency band was compared over time during welding. For the conventional stick electrode welding process (SMAW) several muscles exhibited an increase in the percent of the total signal power in the low-frequency band. Fewer muscles exhibited this fatigue-related spectral density shift with a wire welding process (FCAW) the shipyard has considered adopting. This finding suggests that localized muscle fatigue may be reduced by a change to the wire welding process. Subjectively reported discomfort was generally low for both processes, but confirmed the finding that discomfort in the low back and shoulder regions is experienced in this welding operation.
Keywords
Welders; Welding-industry; Workplace-monitoring; Muscle-function; Shipyard-workers
Contact
Brian Lowe; National Institute for Occupational Safety and Health, 4676 Columbia Parkway, MS C-24, Cincinnati, OH 45226-1998, USA
CODEN
AERGBW
Publication Date
20010601
Document Type
Journal Article
Email Address
blowe@cdc.gov
Fiscal Year
2001
NTIS Accession No.
NTIS Price
Issue of Publication
3
ISSN
0003-6870
NIOSH Division
DART
Priority Area
Musculoskeletal-system-disorders
Source Name
Applied Ergonomics
State
OH
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