NIOSHTIC-2 Publications Search
Physical and Chemical Characteristics of Airborne Fibers.
Ayer HE; Zumwalde RD
Institute of Environmental Health, University of Cincinnati, Cincinnati, Ohio 1979 Apr:38 pages
The chemical and physical properties of fibers commonly found in the air were reviewed, and a definition of a fiber was developed. An aspect ratio of 5 was considered to eliminate most nonfibrous particles. Fiber types discussed included organic fibers, mineral wool, fibrous glass, phytoliths, asbestos (1332214), chrysotile (12001295), crocidolite (12001284), amosite (12172735), anthophyllite (17068789), tremolite (14567738), actinolite (13768008), attapulgite (12174117), wollastonite (13983170), and other mineral fibers. Most of the organic fibers commonly found in indoor air were of animal and vegetable origin, while monofilamentous synthetic fibers were less frequently found. Airborne organic fibers may be of importance only in mills processing such materials. Amorphous fibers were found in the lungs of humans at autopsy and in air samples from urban areas. The methods of production of amorphous fibers such as glass and slag fibers, and crystalline fibers such as asbestos, resulted in inherent size differences. Chrysotile asbestos accounted for over 95 percent of current commercial asbestos production. Studies indicated that amphibole asbestos fibers are stiffer and straighter than chrysotile. Attapulgite and wollastonite have been known to occur in microfibrous form. The authors recommend that controls be instituted to limit exposures to any airborne fibrous dust.
Airborne-dusts; Mineral-dusts; Chemical-properties; Physical-properties; Airborne-fibers; Asbestos-fibers; Synthetic-fibers;
1332-21-4; 12001-29-5; 12001-28-4; 12172-73-5; 17068-78-9; 14567-73-8; 13768-00-8; 12174-11-7; 13983-17-0;
NTIS Accession No.
Institute of Environmental Health, University of Cincinnati, Cincinnati, Ohio, 38 pages, 40 references
Page last reviewed: September 2, 2020
Content source: National Institute for Occupational Safety and Health Education and Information Division