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In-depth survey report: single letter particle expulsion comparison of an existing advanced facer canceller system (AFCS) and an AFCS 200 configuration at Siemens Industry, Mobility USA, Infrastructure Logistics Postal Solutions Arlington, Texas.
Hammond DR; Lo L; Garcia A; Marlow D; Hirst DVL; Trifonoff N; Eaton L; Shulman S
Cincinnati, OH: U.S. Department of Health and Human Services, Public Health Service, Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, National Institute for Occupational Safety and Health, EPHB 279-25a, 2010 May; :1-18
Researchers from the National Institute for Occupational Safety and Health (NIOSH) conducted an evaluation to compare particle expulsion from letters sent through United States Postal Service (USPS) mail processing equipment - the Advanced Facer Canceller System (AFCS) and the production AFCS 200 configuration under the Biohazard Detection System (BDS) hood and in the BDS area. The AFCS 200 was developed to update the approximately 20 year old AFCS fleet of mail processing machines. The testing described in this report evaluated changes to the AFCS 200, such as belt speeds and pulley sizes, which might negatively impact the release of particles from mail pieces processed on the machine. The AFCS agitates and compresses mail pieces during initial mail processing operations to expel any biological hazards that could be contained in a mail piece. A BDS, located over initial hard pinch points on the AFCS, samples and analyzes the air for the presence of biohazards thereby preventing the delivery of a tainted letter to a target destination address. To compare particle expulsion, an existing AFCS and AFCS 200 were tested side-by-side at Siemens Industry, Mobility USA, Infrastructure Logistics Postal Solutions in Arlington, Texas. Each machine had a BDS hood ventilation system that captured expelled particles and allowed for sample collection from the exhaust stream of the BDS hose. Comparisons were based on particle count measurements taken from the sample hose of the BDS after each individual letter loaded with dry polystyrene latex (PSL) spheres was processed by each machine. A total of 780 envelopes (195 envelopes on each machine at BDS flow rates of 200 LPM and 400 LPM) were each stuffed with two tri-folded letters and loaded with 1.5 mg of PSL spheres. Total particle counts from each single envelope were corrected by counts from a preceding single unloaded envelope. The ratio of the geometric mean particle counts from loaded envelopes sent through the AFCS 200 divided by the geometric mean particle counts from loaded envelopes sent through the existing AFCS were 1.75 and 1.84 for BDS flow rates of200 and 400 LPM, respectively. The lower 95% confidence limits for BDS flow rates of 200 and 400 LPM were 1.4 and 1.53, respectively. Based on the results of this testing, it can be stated, with 95% confidence, that the mean particle counts from a loaded envelope sent through the AFCS 200 were at least 40% higher than the mean particle count of a loaded envelope sent through the existing AFCS. This is true for testing at BDS flow rates of 200 and 400 LPM.
Region-6; Control-technology; Engineering-controls; Control-equipment; Biological-warfare-agents; Postal-employees; Ventilation-equipment; Ventilation-hoods; Filtration; Equipment-design; Biohazards; Testing-equipment; Machine-operation; Particle-aerodynamics; Air-sampling-equipment; Airborne-particles; Particle-counters; Particulate-sampling-methods; Aerosols; Ventilation; Emergency-response; Author Keywords: Engineering-controls; Ventilation; Aerosol; Emergency-response; Anthrax
National Institute for Occupational Safety and Health, Division of Applied Research and Technology, Engineering and Physical Hazards Branch, Mail Stop R-5, 4676 Columbia Parkway, Cincinnati, OH 45226-1998
Field Studies; Control Technology
NTIS Accession No.
National Institute for Occupational Safety and Health
Page last reviewed: May 5, 2020
Content source: National Institute for Occupational Safety and Health Education and Information Division