NIOSHTIC-2 Publications Search

Aerosol filtration and face fit characteristics of respirators.

Willeke K; Chen CC; Xu M; Krishnan U; Marchioni R; Liebhaber F; Lehtimaki M; Grinshpun S; Juozaitis A; Szewczyk K
Proceedings, First Symposium on Pollution and Health Effects of Aerosols, September 10-12, 1991, Taipei, Taiwan 1991 Sep; :21-29
Face fit characteristics of respirators and aerosol filtration were discussed. Full face respirators provided the best protection, but were often heavy, uncomfortable and obstructed the vision of the worker. Filtering facepieces were the lightest and least burdensome to use, but were not as pliable as the elastomeric respirators and may, therefore, incur greater faceseal leakage. Several methods have been developed to test the quantitative and qualitative fit of the respirator to the wearer. In the fit test technique used in the United States, the subject puts on the respirator and then follows a set of exercises, making head and facial movements which simulate movements during normal work. The detector extracted a small amount of air from the respiratory cavity during inhalation and exhalation and measures the concentration of aerosol in the extracted air. In order to develop a fit testing method for disposable respirators, it is crucial to understand the filter and leak penetration characteristics of filtering facepieces. Aerosol penetration alone is not enough to rank respirator filters. Evaluation of the total performance must include both the penetration of the filter and the air resistance. The performance of surgical masks was also considered. The authors conclude that greater protection is provided by filtering facepieces with higher fiber charge density than filtering facepieces made of mechanical fibers.
NIOSH-Author; NIOSH-Grant; Respirators; Respiratory-protection; Respiratory-system-disorders; Protective-equipment; Safety-equipment; Personal-protective-equipment; Air-contamination
Environmental Health University of Cincinnati Dept of Environmental Health Cincinnati, Ohio 45267
Publication Date
Document Type
Conference/Symposia Proceedings
Funding Amount
Funding Type
Fiscal Year
Identifying No.
Priority Area
Source Name
Proceedings, First Symposium on Pollution and Health Effects of Aerosols, September 10-12, 1991, Taipei, Taiwan
Performing Organization
University of Cincinnati, Cincinnati, Ohio
Page last reviewed: February 25, 2022
Content source: National Institute for Occupational Safety and Health Education and Information Division