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Key aspects

Particle size distribution determination of the non-volatile fraction of a paint aerosol within the range of nanometer and sub-micron size, using different aerosol measuring techniques. A special measuring chamber will be constructed to ensure a representative aerosol sampling for a given spray gun and operating parameters. Numerical simulations, accounting for droplet evaporation, will be carried out, in order to predict the particle distribution in the chamber.

Particle size distribution determination of the non-volatile fraction of the spray jet, in order to detect the health-relevant alveolar, thoracic and inhalable fractions of the airborne material. Information about the droplet evaporation, obtained by numerical simulations of droplet trajectories will be applied to correct the measured droplet size distribution.TEM

Model paint formulations with MNMs, differing in particle morphology (e.g., particle size distribution, particle form and particle surface chemistry), particle/particle and particle/binder interactions as well as the particle concentration with regard to the binder.

Analyses of substances in a paint overspray with TGA, TEM, SEM, EDX and IR microscopy.

Examination of worker exposure to paint overspray directly in, for instance, simple and crude painting booths with consideration of the air flow and geometry of the work place. Numerical simulation

Numerical prediction of paint exposure and comparison with experimental results.

Toxicological studyAcute toxicological study, especially on the respiratory tract, using a whole-body exposure model developed at the University of Namur, with respect to ethical considerations. The aerosol will be generated based on the overspray determination, mimicking a potential human exposure. Toxicological analysis include histopathological examinations of main organs, analysis in the pulmonary lavage and evaluation of biopersistence.  The physicochemical characteristics of the nanoparticles in the paint matrix will be measured during aerosol exposition in this whole body exposure model.