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Unit 4.I.5 Materials and Particulate Hazardous Substances

The unit investigates and evaluates occupational safety aspects of activities involving particulate hazardous substances such as nanomaterials and other advanced materials. It identifies open questions, initiates research activities and participates hands-on in research and development activities.

In the process, questions concerning exposure and material morphology in particular are answered within the framework of national and international cooperation. Based on the results, the unit participates in the development of pre-regulatory testing and precautionary strategies to protect workers at an early stage of material innovation.

Currently, the focus is on the following tasks:

  • Investigations into the dustiness propensity of materials, especially fibrous materials, including nanomaterials.
  • Development and standardisation of methods for targeted aerosol generation, especially of fibrous materials, including nanomaterials
  • Development of methods for the morphological characterisation of dust particles from nanomaterials and advanced materials as well as the effect of such materials
  • Development and validation of measurement methods for the acquisition of personal exposures
  • Carrying out measurements to assess particle exposure towards the respiratory tract at the workplace
  • Development and testing of concepts for low-emission workplace design and safe handling of nanomaterials
  • Research and development on the use of adaptive systems and other automated evaluation tools for the risk characterisation of particulate hazardous substances
  • Contributing to the further development of regulations and recommendations for the placement on the market and for the use of advanced materials.

In addition to the many years of expertise of its staff, the unit operates state-of-the-art equipment for aerosol measurement, particle analysis and imaging to answer current questions relevant to occupational safety and health on particulate hazardous substances and advanced materials.


Dr Kerstin Kämpf

Head of Unit 4.I.5 Materials and Particulate Hazardous Substances

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