Accession Number:

ADA465595

Title:

Workplace Breathing Rates: Defining Anticipated Values and Ranges for Respirator Certification Testing

Descriptive Note:

Corporate Author:

OAK RIDGE INST OF NUCLEAR STUDIES TN

Report Date:

2004-09-01

Pagination or Media Count:

71.0

Abstract:

Test methods currently used by the National Institute for Occupational Safety and Health NIOSH are designed to assure that respirators meet a minimum level of efficacy when tested under standard laboratory protocols. For air-purifying respirators APRs, the primary performance tests most affected by airflow rate are filter gas-life capacity, particulate filter efficiency, and respirator breathing resistances. Presently, NIOSH measures all three parameters using constant-rate airflow conditions. An analysis of the measured and estimated minute volumes contained in the literature indicated a range from about 8 to 162 L minexp -1 for unencumbered ventilation and work activities that spanned from mild to exhaustive. Based on an empirical relationship between minute volume and peak inspiratory flow PIF, peak flows between 72 minexp-1 and 183 L min exp -1 would be expected for the mean minute volume for 38.5 L minexp -1. The anticipated range of PIF rates for the 95th percentile minute volume is between 182 L minexp -1 and 295 minexp -1. The results of this literature review suggest an increases in cyclic flow rates used for respirator certification testing should be considered to better represent ventilation rates found in the workplace.

Subject Categories:

  • Life Support Systems

Distribution Statement:

APPROVED FOR PUBLIC RELEASE