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Comparison of Lead and Tin Concentrations in Air at a Solder Manufacturer from the Closed-Face 37-mm Cassette With and Without a Custom Cellulose-Acetate Cassette Insert
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  • Alternative Title:
    J Occup Environ Hyg
  • Description:
    A polyvinyl chloride (PVC) cassette insert with PVC filter (ACCU-CAP) in a 37-mm closed-face cassette (CFC) was designed for gravimetric analysis. A customized version of the ACCU-CAP, also to be used in the CFC, was manufactured from an acid-digestible cellulose-acetate cassette insert joined to a mixed cellulose ester (MCE) filter for wet chemical analysis. The aim of this study was to compare metal particle concentrations as sampled by the customized insert (CI) in a CFC sampler with the traditional sampling method using only a MCE filter in the CFC. Thirty-nine personal and 13 area samples were taken using paired filter-based CFC and the CI in CFC samplers at a solder manufacturing plant. The CI was removed from its CFC, and digested and analyzed as a whole. The MCE filter from the typical CFC was removed for analysis and then the interior of the cassette was wiped with Ghost Wipe for a separate analysis. The MCE filter only, Ghost Wipe, and CI were separately dissolved in heated nitric acid for ICP-MS analysis. Overall, the geometric mean concentration of the filter-only (FO) samples was considerably lower than that of the CI samples, by 53% for lead and 32% for tin. However, if the FO analysis was added to the corresponding Ghost Wipe analysis, i.e., filter+interior wipe (FW), the geometric mean concentrations of the FW results were similar to those of the CI results (by 113% for lead and 98% for tin). For both lead and tin the comparison of (log-transformed) metal concentrations between the FW and CI results showed no statistically significant difference (p-value = 0.3009 for lead and 0.800 for tin), while the comparison between the FO and CI results shows statistically significant differences (all p-values < 0.05). In conclusion, incorporating the sampler internal non-filter deposits by wiping or use of an internal filter capsule gave higher results than analyzing only the filter. Close agreement between the two methods of including non-filter deposits is an indication of general equivalency.
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