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Sampling Efficiency of Modified 37-mm Sampling Cassettes Using Computational Fluid Dynamics
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Sampling Efficiency of Modified 37-mm Sampling Cassettes Using Computational Fluid Dynamics
  • Alternative Title:
    J Occup Environ Hyg
  • Description:
    In the U.S., most industrial hygiene practitioners continue to rely on the closed-face cassette (CFC) to assess worker exposures to hazardous dusts, primarily because ease of use, cost, and familiarity. However, mass concentrations measured with this classic sampler underestimate exposures to larger particles throughout the inhalable particulate mass (IPM) size range (up to aerodynamic diameters of 100 μm). To investigate whether the current 37-mm inlet cap can be redesigned to better meet the IPM sampling criterion, computational fluid dynamics (CFD) models were developed, and particle sampling efficiencies associated with various modifications to the CFC inlet cap were determined. Simulations of fluid flow (standard k-epsilon turbulent model) and particle transport (laminar trajectories, 1-116 μm) were conducted using sampling flow rates of 10 L min(-1) in slow moving air (0.2 m s(-1)) in the facing-the-wind orientation. Combinations of seven inlet shapes and three inlet diameters were evaluated as candidates to replace the current 37-mm inlet cap. For a given inlet geometry, differences in sampler efficiency between inlet diameters averaged less than 1% for particles through 100 μm, but the largest opening was found to increase the efficiency for the 116 μm particles by 14% for the flat inlet cap. A substantial reduction in sampler efficiency was identified for sampler inlets with side walls extending beyond the dimension of the external lip of the current 37-mm CFC. The inlet cap based on the 37-mm CFC dimensions with an expanded 15-mm entry provided the best agreement with facing-the-wind human aspiration efficiency. The sampler efficiency was increased with a flat entry or with a thin central lip adjacent to the new enlarged entry. This work provides a substantial body of sampling efficiency estimates as a function of particle size and inlet geometry for personal aerosol samplers.

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