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Collection, validation and generation of bitumen fumes for inhalation studies in rats. Pt.1: Workplace samples and validation criteria

: Preiß, A.; Koch, W.; Kock, H.; Raabe, M.; Pohlmann, G.


The Annals of occupational hygiene 50 (2006), Nr.8, S.789-804
ISSN: 0003-4878
ISSN: 1475-3162
Fraunhofer ITEM ()
Animal experimentation; Bituminous materials; inhalation toxicology; rat

OBJECTIVES: Undertaking a chronic inhalation study on bitumen fume presents a challenge in terms of generating large amounts of representative fume. The objective of the study described in this and the following contributions was to collect sufficient fume and develop a laboratory-generated exposure atmosphere that resembles, as closely as possible, personal exposures seen in workers during road paving operations, for use in chronic inhalation toxicity studies in rats.
METHODS: To achieve this goal, atmospheric workplace samples were collected at road paving work sites both by Shell Global Solutions, Int. (Shell) and by the 'Berufsgenossenschaftliches Institut fur Arbeitssicherheit' (BIA, Germany) and compared with bitumen fume condensate samples collected from the head space of hot bitumen storage tanks. Part 1 describes the collection and analysis of personal and static workplace samples. Different sampling methods were also used to allow a comparison of the standard German sampling method with the most common industry method used. Samples were analyzed by Shell, BIA and by the Fraunhofer Institute of Toxicology and Experimental Medicine (Fh-ITEM, Germany) using different methods. Parameters determined were: total particulate matter (TPM), benzene soluble matter (BSM), semi-volatiles (SV), total organic matter (TOM), boiling point distribution (BPD), polycyclic aromatic hydrocarbons (PAHs) and UV fluorescence (UVF).
RESULTS: The BPD of personal and static samples had almost identical start and end points, but static samples show a tendency towards an increase in amounts of higher boiling point compounds. Personal samples generally show higher PAH concentrations than comparable static samples. The results of the analysis of personal workplace samples were used to establish validation/acceptance criteria for the bitumen fume condensate sampled from storage tanks for the inhalation study, which is described in a further publication.
CONCLUSIONS: The criteria involve a range of parameters that can be analyzed in both workplace samples and samples of tank fume condensate: BPD, UVF and content of individual PAHs were selected as parameters.