Fluoride Action Network


The levels of fluoride airborne particulates emitted from welding processes were investigated. They were sampled with the patented IOM Sampler, developed by J. H. Vincent and D. Mark at the Institute of Occupational Medicine (IOM), personal inhalable sampler for simultaneous collection of the inhalable and respirable size fractions. Ion chromatography with conductometric detection was used for quantitative analysis. The efficiency of fluoride extraction from the cellulose filter of the IOM sampler was examined using the standard sample of urban air particle matter SRM-1648a. The best results for extraction were obtained when water and the anionic surfactant N-Cetyl-NNN-trimethylammonium bromide (CTAB) were used in an ultrasonic bath. The limits of detection and quantification for the whole procedure were 8 ?g/L and 24 ?g/L, respectively. The linear range of calibration was 0.01–10 mg/L, which corresponds to 0.0001–0.1 mg of fluorides per m3 in collection of a 20 L air sample. The concentration of fluorides in the respirable fraction of collected air samples was in the range of 0.20–1.82 mg/m3, while the inhalable fraction contained 0.23–1.96 mg/m3 of fluorides during an eight-hour working day in the welding room.

Graphical abstract