The evaluation of short-term water misting of room air in reducing airborne dust after renovation work

Anna Kokkonen, M. Väänänen, Arto Säämänen, Pertti Pasanen

Research output: Contribution to journalArticleScientificpeer-review

1 Citation (Scopus)

Abstract

Objective To shorten the time for airborne dust concentration to be reduced to a lower level after a renovation task has been completed, a short-term water misting method was assessed. A short-term water misting method is based on low water consumption to avoid harmful wetting of materials. The method is considered similar to a general ventilation method that dilutes work-generated airborne dust concentrations. Thus, short-term misting is not intended to replace the source control measures. Methods Airborne dust removal by the short-term water misting performed after dust generation was evaluated in a controlled laboratory settings by comparing PM10 decay and inhalable dust concentrations between a control and misting tests (average water flow = 0.22 l min -1) of 2 and 4 min. A portable handheld misting device was used. The practicability and effectiveness of the misting technique as a supplementary control measure was verified in the three field cases. Results In laboratory tests, reductions in airborne PM10 and inhalable dust were 30% and 28%, avoiding condensation of water to surfaces. In the field, inhalable dust concentrations were reduced by 86-95% after an hour from the misting, whereas ventilation alone was calculated to dilute dust concentrations by 18-39%. Average clean air delivery rates varied from 0.03 to 0.07 m 3 s -1. Conclusions Short-term misting after a dust-generating task is an effective measure to control the airborne dust after dust-producing tasks in environments where an effective air exchange for dust removal is not a feasible alternative. The information obtained from the study is beneficial to construction and renovation project management personnel and field practitioners.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)242-255
Number of pages14
JournalAnnals of Work Exposures and Health
Volume63
Issue number2
DOIs
Publication statusPublished - 2019
MoE publication typeA1 Journal article-refereed

Keywords

  • PM10
  • construction
  • dust control
  • dust removal
  • inhalable dust

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