Accession Number : ADA233924

Title :   Composite Fiber Hazards

Descriptive Note : Final rept.,

Corporate Author : AIR FORCE OCCUPATIONAL AND ENVIRONMENTAL HEALTH LAB BROOKS AFB TX

Personal Author(s) : Seibert, John F.

PDF Url : ADA233924

Report Date : DEC 1990

Pagination or Media Count : 23

Abstract : This report reviews potential health hazards from carbon/graphite and boron composite materials used in aircraft. Carbon and boron fibers are used as reinforcement in an epoxy matrix to form composite material aircraft parts. There is increasing concern over the potential health effects of these fibers released during sanding and grinding of composite parts in structural repair shops, and during clean up operations following aircraft accidents involving fire and/or breakage of composite parts. With the demise of the term 'CORKER,' hazards from carbon composite materials were deemphasized. However, the CORKER annotation only addressed the electrical shorting hazards from airborne fibers following a fire and did not examine in detail potential health effects. Maintenance workers fear that carbon fibers are carcinogens. A review of the current literature on carbon fiber indicates it is relatively inert. Industrial hygiene evaluations should include sampling for total dust and comparing the levels to the ACGIH TLV for nuisance dust. Occupational health efforts should focus on problems with contact dermatitis from the resins systems and toxic effects of resin hardeners.

Descriptors :   *BORON, *EPOXY COMPOSITES, *HAZARDS, *MATRIX MATERIALS, STRUCTURAL PROPERTIES, HEALTH, POLYMERS, TOXICITY, COMPOSITE MATERIALS, GRAPHITE, CARBON FIBERS, CARBON, DUST, SAMPLING, FEAR, PARTS, PERSONNEL, CARCINOGENS, HARDENING, REPAIR SHOPS, GRINDING, INDUSTRIAL HYGIENE, AIRCRAFT, FIBERS, COMPOSITE AIRCRAFT, TEST AND EVALUATION, MAINTENANCE

Subject Categories : Toxicology
      Laminates and Composite Materials

Distribution Statement : APPROVED FOR PUBLIC RELEASE