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Field evaluation of a LIBS sampler for determining surface contamination due to beryllium.

Hoover M; McCawley M; Yereb D; Tinkle S; Beaton S; French P
American Industrial Hygiene Conference and Exposition, June 1-6, 2002, San Diego, California. Fairfax, VA: American Industrial Hygiene Association, 2002 Jun; :91
A prototype multi-spectral, laser induced breakdown spectrometer (LIBS) was used to collect information on potential beryllium contamination of work surfaces and equipment. The LIBS instrument used an adjustable, high resolution spectrograph equipped with a photodiode array to collect 512 channels of emission spectra over the wavelength range from 300 nm to 326 nm. Approximately every four seconds a new spectrum was created, displayed to the operator on a small, built-in personal computer, and stored in memory. The wavelength for the beryllium peak was 313 nm. The spot size for the LIBS interrogation of the surface was approximately 0.3 mm in diameter. The surfaces of interest were first interrogated directly by the detection wand, and then wipe samples were taken of the surfaces and placed under the wand for analysis. Known quantities of beryllium oxide powder or beryllium sulfate solutions were placed on mixed cellulose ester filters in the concentration range of 0.01 to 400 ug per filter. The concentrations were verified using NIOSH Method 7300. The LIBS was able to clearly identify the presence of beryllium in either form, even at a concentration as low as 0.01 ug on a 37 mm filter. The control limit recommended by the U.S. Department of Energy Chronic Beryllium Disease Prevention Program is 0.2 mg/100 cm2 for release of items or work surfaces to unrestricted use. The instrument was used to verify beryllium contamination on surfaces of a variety of composition including counter tops, shelving, and floors, and painted, plastic, and metal equipment. Independent verification of contamination was obtained through NIOSH Method 7300. Use of the LIBS device was successful in guiding a thorough and cost-effective cleaning effort and in confirming the efficacy of the measures taken.
Samplers; Surface-properties; Beryllium-compounds; Filters; Analytical-methods; Analytical-instruments
Publication Date
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NIOSH Division
Priority Area
Research Tools and Approaches: Exposure Assessment Methods
Source Name
American Industrial Hygiene Conference and Exposition, June 1-6, 2002, San Diego, California
Page last reviewed: May 5, 2020
Content source: National Institute for Occupational Safety and Health Education and Information Division