Practical EHS Approaches Related To The Use Of Engineered Nano-Scale Materials

McCulloch , Mark
(Hewlett-Packard, Corvallis OR)

Much of what we hear about EHS aspects of nanotechnology focuses on the future, such as unknown health effects of nano-scale materials, the need for more research, and the need for exposure standards. While these issues are important, EHS people tasked with ensuring a safe workplace TODAY are also interested in practical approaches that can be applied immediately. By understanding how these materials are formulated & used, basic EHS / industrial hygiene practices can be applied to the use of engineered nano-scale materials. The company’s EHS values can also address this area of emerging risk, similar to the ALARA principle in radiation safety. This “precautionary principle” is addressed in some of the latest ASTM (American Society for Testing and Materials) standards development work.

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