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Comparison of two carbon analysis methods for monitoring diesel particulate levels in mines.

Birch-ME; Dahmann-D; Fricke-HH
J Environ Monit 1999 Nov; 1(6):541-544
Two carbon analysis methods are currently being applied to the occupational monitoring of diesel particulate matter. Both methods are based on thermal techniques for the determination of organic and elemental carbon. In Germany, method ZH 1/120.44 has been published. This method, or a variation of it, is being used for compliance measurements in several European countries, and a Comité Européen de Normalization Working Group was formed recently to address the establishment of a European measurement standard. In the USA, a thermal optical method has been published as Method 5040 by the National Institute for Occupational Safety and Health. As with ZH 1/120.44, organic and elemental carbon are determined through temperature and atmosphere control, but different instrumentation and analysis conditions are used. Although the two methods are similar in principle, they gave statistically different results in a previous interlaboratory comparison. Because different instruments and operating conditions are used, between-method differences can be expected in some cases. Reasonable agreement is expected when the sample contains no other (i.e., non-diesel) sources of carbonaceous particulate and the organic fraction is essentially removed below about 500 degrees C. Airborne particulate samples from some mines may meet these criteria. Comparison data on samples from mines are important because the methods are being applied in this workplace for occupational monitoring and epidemiological studies. In this paper, results of a recent comparison on samples collected in a Canadian mine are reported. As seen in a previous comparison, there was good agreement between the total carbon results found by the two methods, with ZH 1/120.44 giving about 6% less carbon than Method 5040. Differences in the organic and elemental carbon results were again seen, but they were much smaller than those obtained in the previous comparison. The relatively small differences in the split between organic and elemental carbon are attributed to the different thermal programs used.
Particulate-dust; Analytical-chemistry; Analytical-methods; Diesel-emissions; Diesel-exhausts; Exposure-assessment; Aerosol-particles; Aerosols; Mining-equipment; Mortality-rates; Mortality-data; Carcinogens; Airborne-dusts; Airborne-particles; Statistical-analysis; Mining-industry
US Department of Health and Human Services, Public Health Service, Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, National Institute for Occupational Safety and Health, Division of Physical Sciences and Engineering, 4676 Columbia Parkway, Cincinnati, OH 452
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Journal of Environmental Monitoring
Page last reviewed: September 2, 2020
Content source: National Institute for Occupational Safety and Health Education and Information Division