Background As the number of engineered nanomaterials (ENMs)-containing product is increasing on the markets, it has become a potential exposure source to consumers. Sprays containing ENMs is a crucial category of consumer products due to direct inhalation in terms of health effects. The purpose of this study was to evaluate the spatial-temporal distributions of aerosolized ENMs during use of products according to spraying types.
Methods The measurement was conducted in a cleanroom to control background particles. Propellant and trigger sprays including ENMs were sprayed when the background concentration was stable. Aerosolized ENMs were measured using direct-reading instruments (Scanning Mobility Particle Sizer + Optical Particle Sizer; 10–10,000 nm) at 1, 2, 3 m from a sprayer before, spraying and after spraying, respectively.
Results The particle number concentration of the propellant sprays was about 50 times higher than those of the trigger sprays at 1 m distance from the sprayer. The background concentration before spraying was kept from 100–400 particles/cc in the cleanroom. The total concentrations increased up to 8,690–13,708 particles/cc during use of propellant sprays at 1 m distance, while those of trigger sprays were similar with the background levels regardless of distance. It was higher than 5,183–10,606 particles/cc at 2 m and 2,664–9,240 particles/cc at 3 m during use of propellant sprays. The proportion of nano-sized particles (<100 nm) in total concentration was 85–90%. The airborne particles were stayed for about 180 min in the cleanroom and after that, decreased to the background level.
Conclusion The particles including ENMs were emitted during use of spray consumer products. The aerosols were emitted much higher during use of propellant sprays and stayed long time in the air than trigger sprays. The particles were also dispersed to longer distance when the propellants were sprayed. It could affect human exposure according to the spray type.
Acknowledgement This study was sponsored by the fund of National Institute of Environmental Research (NIER-SP2015-254), Republic of Korea in 2015.
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