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Aluminum (as Al), Metal (Total Dust)

General Description

Synonyms: Aluminum; Aluminium; Aluminum powder; Aluminum, elemental

OSHA IMIS code: A100

CAS number: 7429-90-5

Monitoring Methods used by OSHA

Primary Laboratory Sampling/Analytical Method:

Federal OSHA and OSHA State Plan personnel submitting samples to the OSHA Salt Lake Technical Center Laboratory for analysis must use the tared gravimetric sampling media described immediately below.

  • maximum volume: 960 L
  • minimum volume: 480 L
  • maximum flow rate: 2.0 L/min
  • current analytical method: gravimetric
  • method reference: OSHA PV2121 (partially validated)
  • note: OSHA personnel can obtain tared sampling media from the OSHA-Salt Lake Technical Center.
  • note: If the net weight of the sample yields a concentration below the standard for the substance, the OSHA-Salt Lake Technical Center will perform no further work on that sample. If the net weight corresponds to an amount greater than the standard, the sample may be analyzed for the appropriate element and the result reported as the substance.
  • note: Refer to Chemical Sampling Information for "alpha-Alumina" when sampling workplaces that have aluminum oxide exposures (welding, etc.).
  • current elemental analysis method: atomic absorption spectroscopy; AAS
  • method reference: OSHA ID-121 (fully validated)
  • alternate analytical method: Samples are prepared as described in OSHA ID-121 and are analyzed by inductively coupled argon plasma; ICP/AES or ICP/MS.
  • note: When analysis of aluminum metal is requested, an elemental analysis is performed and reported as aluminum metal. The analytical method does not distinguish between dust and fume; or between aluminum metal and other acid soluble or partially acid soluble aluminum compounds.
  • maximum volume: 960 L
  • minimum volume: 480 L
  • maximum flow rate: 2.0 L/min
  • current elemental analysis method: atomic absorption spectroscopy; AAS
  • method reference: OSHA ID-121 (fully validated)
  • alternate analytical method: Samples are prepared as described in OSHA ID-121 and are analyzed by inductively coupled argon plasma; ICP/AES or ICP/MS.
  • note: When analysis of aluminum metal is requested, an elemental analysis is performed and reported as aluminum metal. The analytical method does not distinguish between dust and fume; or between aluminum metal and other acid soluble or partially acid soluble aluminum compounds.

Exposure Limits and Health Effects (Updated September 6, 2012)

Standard Set By Exposure Limit Health Effect Codes -- Health Effects and Target Organs
OSHA PEL - General Industry
See 29 CFR 1910.1000 Table Z-1
15 mg/m3 TWA HE19 -- physical irritation
OSHA PEL - Construction Industry Not established  
OSHA PEL - Shipyard Employment
See 29 CFR 1915.1000 Table Z-Shipyards
15 mg/m3 TWA HE16 -- physical irritation
NIOSH REL 10 mg/m3 TWA HE10 -- lung changes that may lead to pulmonary fibrosis
ACGIH TLV® (2007) 1 mg/m3 (respirable particulate matter) TWA
A4
 
CAL/OSHA PELs 10 mg/m3 TWA  

Health factors for the PELs are not specific to aluminum but are the basis for OSHA's generic limits for particulates.

Carcinogenic classification:

  • NTP: Not listed
  • IARC: Not listed
  • EPA: Not listed

EPA Inhalation Reference Concentration (RfC): Not established

ATSDR Inhalation Minimal Risk Levels (MRLs): Not established

NIOSH IDLH concentration: Not established

Notes on other potential health effects and hazards:

  1. Respiratory effects, particularly impaired lung function and fibrosis, have been observed in workers exposed to aluminum dust or fumes (ATSDR 2008).
  2. Aluminium cast-house workers reported significantly more respiratory symptoms (continuous trouble with breathing, repeated trouble with breathing, wheezing, asthma attacks, and doctor-diagnosed asthma) compared to a general population sample and an internal reference group (van Rooy et al. 2011).
  3. Chronic occupational exposure to aluminum dust and fumes can cause signs of cholestasis (Bogdanovic and Bulat 2008).

Partial reference list:

  • ACGIH: Documentation of the Threshold Limit Values (TLVs) and Biological Exposure Indices (BEIs) - Aluminum Metal and Insoluble Compounds. 2016.
  • ATSDR: Toxicological Profile for Aluminum. September 2008.
  • Bogdanovic, M. and Bulat, P.: Biliary Function in Workers Occupationally Exposed to Aluminum Dust and Fumes. Archives of Industrial Hygiene and Toxicology 59(2): 135-9, 2008.
  • NIOSH: Recommendations for occupational safety and health - Compendium of policy documents and statements. Cincinnati, OH: NIOSH Publication No. 92-100, (1992).
  • NIOSH: Occupational Health Guidelines for Chemical Hazards. NIOSH Publication No. 81-123, (January 1981). Provides a table of contents of guidelines for many hazardous chemicals. The files provide technical chemical information, including chemical and physical properties, health effects, exposure limits, and recommendations for medical monitoring, personal protective equipment (PPE), and control procedures.
  • van Rooy, F.G., Houba, R., Stigter, H., Zaat, V.A., Zengeni, M.M., Rooyackers, J.M., Boers, H.E., Heederik, D.J.: A cross-sectional study of exposures, lung function and respiratory symptoms among aluminium cast-house workers. Occup Environ Med. 68(12): 876-82, 2011.

Chemical Sampling Information

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