Reducing miners' exposure to Diesel Particulate Matter (DPM) using real-time measurement.
Compliance with Diesel Particulate Matter (DPM) exposure regulation is currently performed using time-weighted average (TWA) sampling on underground mine workers. These samples are collected in the span of an entire shift and the resulting concentrations are compared to a legislated exposure limit. While this is very useful to determine the exposure level of an individual to DPM, it fails to clearly identify causes of exposure and highlight opportunities that could help reduce the exposure of workers in the course of the work shift. Real-time DPM monitoring measures the worker’s exposure as a function of time and identifies circumstances where corrective actions can be taken or design changes can be made by the individual or the employer to reduce the overall exposure of the worker and peers. This work focused on obtaining real-time DPM concentrations using the EcoChem Analytics PAS 2000 Real-Time PAH Monitor. The aim was to demonstrate that the PAS 2000, while not a direct DPM analyzer, was able to provide a concentration profile that could be easily linearly correlated to standard TWA elemental carbon measurements. In addition, several instances of improvements that could be implemented to reduce the exposure of underground employees were demonstrated.
diesel particulate, diesel sampling, Diesel emissions, Ventilation