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Permeation of polychlorinated biphenyls and solutions of these substances through selected protective clothing materials.

Stampfer JF; McLeod MJ; Betts MR; Martinez AM; Berardinelli SP
Am Ind Hyg Assoc J 1984 Sep; 45(9):634-641
Permeation of polychlorinated biphenyls (PCBs) and their solutions through selected protective garment materials was examined. Seven liquids tested were trichlorobenzene (12002481) (TCB), Aroclor-1254 (11097691), paraffin-oil (8012951), Aroclor-1254 with TCB, and three different concentrations of Aroclor-1254 in paraffin-oil. Types of protective garments tested included surgical rubber, butyl-rubber (9010859), polyethylene (9002884), polyvinyl-alcohol (9002895), Saranex laminated tyvek, neoprene (69028371), milled nitrile, viton (58899), viton-SF, vitrile, and flexed teflon (9002840). Two types of permeation tests were carried out. A permeation cell with a two phase collection media, water and isooctane was used in one and in another test, a thumb cot of the material was used into which the challenge liquids were filled and the outside of the thumb cot was sampled at specific time intervals. The weights and volume changes that occurred when materials were soaked in the challenge fluids were determined. A schematic form of the permeation cell was produced. While most materials provided protection against Aroclor- 1254 permeation for several hours, surgical and butyl-rubber exhibited breakthrough in less than 6 hours. Permeation of Aroclor- 1254 was promoted further when mixed with TCB in surgical and butyl- rubber, polyethylene, and neoprene. Neither methods supplied quantitative results. However, results from the two methods agree qualitatively. Problems associated with testing with Aroclor-1254 were very low solubility and the viscous consistency, that made removal by swipe difficult. Generally the weight or volume changes decreased with increase in breakthrough time. Viton-SF, vitrile, and nitrile exhibited no breakthrough at 8 hours and thus afforded best protection against PCBs for at least half of a normal working day. The authors conclude that different testing or analytical methods are needed to more carefully determine the permeation of PCBs through protective garment materials.
NIOSH-Author; Safety-research; Toxic-materials; Electrical-insulation; Qualitative-analysis; Safety-clothing; Protective-clothing; Materials-testing; Absorption-rates; Laboratory-techniques; Industrial-chemicals
12002-48-1; 11097-69-1; 8012-95-1; 9010-85-9; 9002-88-4; 9002-89-5; 69028-37-1; 58-89-9; 9002-84-0
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American Industrial Hygiene Association Journal
Page last reviewed: November 6, 2020
Content source: National Institute for Occupational Safety and Health Education and Information Division