EPA Science Inventory

CHEMICAL AND PHYSICAL CHARACTERISTICS OF OUTDOOR, INDOOR, AND PERSONAL PARTICULATE AIR SAMPLES COLLECTED IN AND AROUND A RETIREMENT FACILITY

Citation:

Conner, T. L., G. A. Norris, R. W. Williams, AND M. S. Landis. CHEMICAL AND PHYSICAL CHARACTERISTICS OF OUTDOOR, INDOOR, AND PERSONAL PARTICULATE AIR SAMPLES COLLECTED IN AND AROUND A RETIREMENT FACILITY. Presented at EPA/AWMA International Symposium on the Measurement of Toxic and Related Air Pollutants, Research Triangle Park, NC, September 12-14, 2000.

Description:

Residential, personal, indoor, and outdoor sampling of particulate matter was conducted at a retirement center in the Towson area of northern Baltimore County in 1998. Concurrent sampling was conducted at a central community site. Computer-controlled scanning electron microscopy with individual-particle x-ray analysis (CCSEM) was used to measure the chemical and physical characteristics of non-carbonaceous particles collected at the indoor, outdoor and community sampling locations. Indoor residential and personal samples were examined using scanning electron microscopy with individual-particle x-ray analysis (SEM/EDX) in the manual mode.

The CCSEM results show that the relative abundances of particle classes identified at the outdoor and community locations differ from each other and from the indoor location. These results indicate that community-based sampling may not yield samples which, on an individual particle basis, are representative of the particles found indoors. Particle images acquired during the computer-controlled analyses played a key role in the identification of certain particle types, though review of particle images was time-intensive.

Manual SEM/EDX examination of personal samples suggest personal care products and hobbies or other activities (in addition to cooking and cleaning) as possible sources of particle exposure. Quantitative differences among selected personal and residential samples were observed. We conclude that CCSEM and manual SEM/EDX can contribute to the understanding of the sources of particulate matter in different micro-environments.

This work has been funded wholly or in part by the United States Environmental Protection Agency under contract #68-D5-0040 to the Research Triangle Institute and under contract #68-D5-0049 to ManTech Environmental Technology, Inc. It has been subjected to Agency review and approved for publication.

Purpose/Objective:

The NERL SEM/EDX facility was established to provide a state-of-the-art resource for individual particle analysis. Specific goals of the laboratory are as follows: 1) Provide chemical, morphological, and size characterization of particles in support of ambient air characterization studies, source apportionment, exposure and health studies, and other particulate matter research.; 2) Develop analytical capabilities to support research objectives; 3) Communicate results to clients and the scientific community.

Record Details:

Record Type: DOCUMENT (PRESENTATION/ABSTRACT)
Start Date: 09/12/2000
Completion Date: 09/12/2000
Record Last Revised: 06/21/2006
Record Created: 09/26/2003
Record Released: 09/26/2003
Record ID: 60241

Organization:

U.S. ENVIRONMENTAL PROTECTION AGENCY

OFFICE OF RESEARCH AND DEVELOPMENT

NATIONAL EXPOSURE RESEARCH LAB

HUMAN EXPOSURE AND ATMOSPHERIC SCIENCES DIVISION

ATMOSPHERIC METHODS & MONITORING BRANCH