A numerical study of worker exposure to a gaseous contaminant: variations on body shape and scalar transport model.
Li-J; Yavuz-I; Celik-IB; Guffey-SE
J Occup Environ Hyg 2005 Jun; 2(6):323-334
Three-dimensional computational fluid dynamics simulations are used to investigate the distribution and level of contaminant concentrations in the true breathing zone (at the nose and mouth) when toxic airborne contaminants are released within an arm's length in front of the worker who has his back to the airflow. The effects of different body shapes on fluid flow and concentration patterns around the body in a wind tunnel were evaluated and clarified that a sharp body or a block may not be a good surrogate for the human form in consideration of occupational and environmental health studies. The comparison of the concentration field calculated with the Eulerian and Lagrangian methods revealed that the Eulerian method has a more diffusive nature than the Lagrangian method. The concentrations at different locations were also compared to determine the optimum sampling location. It was found that the concentration at the breathing zone may be significantly different from the one at the chest area. The influence of the heat flux from the body was studied at two different Reynolds numbers. Predictions indicate that the heat flux may have a significant impact on exposure especially when the convection induced by buoyancy dominates the flow.
Workers; Worker-health; Occupational-exposure; Air-contamination; Toxins; Toxic-gases; Toxic-effects; Air-flow; Airborne-particles; Occupational-health; Environmental-health; Gases
Research Tools and Approaches: Exposure Assessment Methods
Journal of Occupational and Environmental Hygiene
College of Egineering and Mineral Resources, West Virginia University