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Safer workplaces.

Brown K
Inside Positions 2011 Apr; 1(2):10
In the framework of the CEMWIP (Chemical Exposure Monitor with Indoor Positioning) a NIOSH team uses Ubisense RTLS to develop and prove the concept of a web-based compact real-time wireless worker exposure and 3-D positioning system for the characterization of occupational hazards. The goal of this project is to develop a new application for direct reading exposure methods, the personal CEMWIP. Though applicable with almost any direct reading exposure sensor, the CEMWIP will initially measure toxic volatile organic compounds in a worker's breathing zone and wirelessly send the exposure and physical position data to a remote computer that calculates and plots exposure concentration, location, and time. The location data of the workers are delivered by Ubisense's small ultra-wideband tags which can be attached to objects or persons. Each tag bears an individual ID number and can be tracked to a 3D accuracy of up to 30 cm and 10 position updates per second. Very short radio pulses are sent by the tags and received at the sensors determining the direction the signal is received from and tiny differences in signal travel time between pairs of sensors. These location and tracking methods result in high accuracy and high reliability even within industrial environments. Sensors are placed at strategic locations in potentially hazardous environments so that they can track the movements of workers. Exposure zones can be assigned to specific measurement readings so workers risking exposure to toxic substances can be warned immediately. Efficient protection: Thus the device will advance the ability to intervene and prevent toxic chemical exposure through administrative and engineering controls. It will advance exposure intervention by providing real-time chemical vapor measurement data both personally and remotely. Personal monitoring will empower workers by providing them with real-time exposure measurements for immediate response. Remote monitoring of exposure data will advance administrative and engineering controls by linking work tasks with chemical vapor release and by providing historical dose maps of the worker's exposure, thus identifying work areas of high exposure. Remote monitoring will also protect an employee who is working alone by providing a mechanism for external second-person warning alerts for immediate intervention. The team considered other hazard sensors such as sound or radiation.
Monitors; Monitoring-systems; Exposure-assessment; Exposure-levels; Sampling-equipment; Samplers; Air-sampling-equipment; Air-sampling-techniques; Air-quality-measurement; Air-quality-monitoring; Vapors; Warning-systems; Warning-signals; Warning-devices; Engineering-controls; Personal-protective-equipment; Personal-protection
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Newsletter; Lay Publication
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Inside Positions
Page last reviewed: March 18, 2022
Content source: National Institute for Occupational Safety and Health Education and Information Division