Composition of heavy metals and airborne fibers in the indoor environment of a building during renovation

Mohd Talib Latif, Nor Hafizah Baharudin, Puvaneswary Velayutham, Normah Awang, Harimah Hamdan, Ruqyyah Mohamad, Mazlin Mokhtar

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle

17 Citations (Scopus)

Abstract

The renovation of a building will certainly affect the quality of air in the vicinity of where associated activities were undertaken, this includes the quality of air inside the building. Indoor air pollutants such as particulate matter, heavy metals, and fine fibers are likely to be emitted during renovation work. This study was conducted to determine the concentration of heavy metals, asbestos and suspended particulates in the Biology Building, at the Universiti Kebangsaan, Malaysia (UKM). Renovation activities were car- ried out widely in the laboratories which were located in this building. A low-volume sampler was used to collect suspended particulate matter of a diameter size less than 10 μm (PM 10) and an air sampling pump, fitted with a cellulose ester membrane filter, were used for asbestos sampling. Dust was collected using a small brush and scope. The concentration of heavy metals was determined through the use of inductively coupled plasma-mass spectroscopy and the fibers were counted through a phase contrast microscope. The concentrations of PM 10 recorded in the building during renovation action (ranging from 166 to 542 μg m -3) were higher than the value set by the Department of Safety and Health for respirable dust (150 μg m -3). Additionally, they were higher than the value of PM 10 recorded in indoor environments from other studies. The composition of heavy metals in PM 10 and indoor dust were found to be dominated by Zn and results also showed that the concentration of heavy metals in indoor dust and PM 10 in this study was higher than levels recorded in other similar studies. The asbestos concentration was 0.0038 plusmnn; 0.0011 fibers/cc. This was lower than the value set by the Malaysian Department of Occupational, Safety and Health (DOSH) regulations of 0.1 fibers/cc, but higher than the background value usually recorded in indoor environments. This study strongly suggests that renovation issues need to be considered seriously by relevant stakeholders within the university in order to ensure that the associated risks toward humans and indoor environment are eliminated, or where this is not feasible, minimized as far as possible.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)479-489
Number of pages11
JournalEnvironmental Monitoring and Assessment
Volume181
Issue number1-4
DOIs
Publication statusPublished - Oct 2011

Fingerprint

Heavy metals
Asbestos
heavy metal
Dust
asbestos
Fibers
dust
Chemical analysis
Air
Health
Sampling
air sampling
air
Inductively coupled plasma
suspended particulate matter
Brushes
indoor air
health and safety
ester
sampler

Keywords

  • Airborne fibers
  • Heavy metals
  • Indoor dust
  • Laboratory
  • PM
  • Renovation

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Environmental Science(all)
  • Management, Monitoring, Policy and Law
  • Pollution

Cite this

Composition of heavy metals and airborne fibers in the indoor environment of a building during renovation. / Latif, Mohd Talib; Baharudin, Nor Hafizah; Velayutham, Puvaneswary; Awang, Normah; Hamdan, Harimah; Mohamad, Ruqyyah; Mokhtar, Mazlin.

In: Environmental Monitoring and Assessment, Vol. 181, No. 1-4, 10.2011, p. 479-489.

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle

Latif, Mohd Talib ; Baharudin, Nor Hafizah ; Velayutham, Puvaneswary ; Awang, Normah ; Hamdan, Harimah ; Mohamad, Ruqyyah ; Mokhtar, Mazlin. / Composition of heavy metals and airborne fibers in the indoor environment of a building during renovation. In: Environmental Monitoring and Assessment. 2011 ; Vol. 181, No. 1-4. pp. 479-489.
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