Air Monitoring Applications - Petrochemical

Polynuclear Aromatic Compounds Air Monitoring

Petrochemical Applications main pagePolynuclear Aromatic Compounds (PACs) are byproducts of fuel burning-which occur in coal, tar, and oil deposits. PACs are not only released from fossil fuels but also in cooked foods and other consumer goods, such as meat, from the high temperature grilling process as well as from incomplete combustion of other carbon-containing fuels such as tobacco, wood, coal, diesel fuel, edible fats, and incense. People living near waste sites containing PACs may be exposed through contact with contaminated air, water, and soil. The consumer may also be exposed to PACs from cigarette smoke (tar-burning), smoke from wood fires, grilling of meats and consumption of edible fats, as well as through food grown in contaminated soil or air.

Industrial workers may be exposed to PACs from processes occurring in: coal tar production plants, coking plants, bitumen and asphalt production plants, coal-gasification sites, smoke houses, aluminum production plants, coal tarring facilities, and municipal trash incinerators. Workers may be exposed by inhaling engine exhaust and by using products that contain PACs in a variety of industries such as mining, oil refining, metalworking, chemical production, transportation, and the electrical industry. PACs have also been found in other facilities where petroleum, petroleum products, or coal are used or where wood, cellulose, corn, or oil is burned.

PAHs known for their carcinogenic, mutagenic and teratogenic properties are benz[a]anthracene, chrysene, benzo[b]fluoranthene, benzo[j]fluoranthene, benzo[k]fluoranthene, benzo[a]pyrene, benzo[ghi]perylene, coronene, dibenz[a,h]anthracene, indeno[1,2,3-cd]pyrene, and ovalene.

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Exposure Limits
Exposure Limit
PAHs (coal tar pitch volatiles-CTPVs)
OSHA (PEL) 0.2 mg/m³ TWA
NIOSH (REL) 0.1 mg/m³ for a 10-hour workday, (40-hour workweek)
ACGIH (PEL) 0.2 mg/m³ for an 8-hour workday, (40-hour workweek)
PAHs (mineral oil mists)
OSHA/NIOSH (PEL/REL) 5 mg/m³ TWA; 10 mg/m³ STEL
(TWA=Time-weighted average; STEL=Short-term Exposure Limit; PEL=Personal Exposure Limit, REL=Recommended Exposure Limit)

Agency for Toxic Substances and Disease Registry (ATSDR). 1995. Toxicological profile for polycyclic aromatic hydrocarbons (PAHs). Atlanta, GA: U.S. Department of Health and Human Services, Public Health Service.
OSHA - Coal Tar Pitch Volatiles

Air Sampling Media by Regulatory Method
Method Contaminants of Interest Sampling Media
OSHA 58 Coal Tar Pitch Volatiles & Selected PAHs Filter – A/E Glass Fiber Filter, 1mm, 37 mm (23378)
OSHA 165SG Acid Gases and Mists Sorbent Tube – Silica Gel w/GFF ORBO-53 (20265)
NIOSH 1501 Aromatic Hydrocarbons Sorbent Tube – Coconut Charcoal; ORBO-32S (20267-U)
Passive Sampling – Radiello BTEX/VOCs (RAD130)
NIOSH 5506 Polynuclear Aromatic Hydrocarbons (PAHs) by HPLC Filter – Zefluor™ PTFE membrane, 2 mm, 37 mm (23390-U),
Sorbent Tube – XAD-2; ORBO-43 (20258)
NIOSH 5515 Polynuclear Aromatic Hydrocarbons (PAHs) by GC Filter – Zefluor™ PTFE membrane, 2 mm, 37 mm (23390-U),
Sorbent Tube – XAD-2; ORBO-43 (20258)
NIOSH 5800 Polyaromatic Compounds (PACs), Total Sorbent Tube – XAD-2; ORBO-43 (20258)
ASTM D6209 Polynuclear Aromatic Hydrocarbons (PAHs) PUF Samplers w/XAD-2 (21233-U, 21235-U)
EPA TO-13A Polynuclear Aromatic Hydrocarbons (PAHs) by GC/MS Polyurethane Foam (PUF); ORBO-2000 (20037)
EPA IP-7 Determination of benzo(a)pyrene and other Polynuclear
Aromatic Hydrocarbons (PAHs)
Polyurethane Foam (PUF); ORBO-2000 (20037)

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