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Hexamethylene Diisocyanate

General Description

  • Synonyms: 1,6-Diisocyanatohexane; HDI; Hexamethylene-1,6-diisocyanate; 1,6-Hexamethylene diisocyanate; HMDI; Desmodur N
  • OSHA IMIS Code Number: 1377
  • Chemical Abstracts Service (CAS) Registry Number: 822-06-0
  • Other Chemical Abstracts Service (CAS) Registry Number: 11142-52-2
  • NIOSH Registry of Toxic Effects (RTECS) Identification Number: MO1740000
  • Department of Transportation Regulation Number (49 CFR 172.101) and Emergency Response Guidebook: 2281 156
  • NIOSH Pocket Guide to Chemical Hazards - Hexamethylene Diisocyanate: Physical description, chemical properties, potentially hazardous incompatibilities, and more
  • U.S. Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) Hazard Summary - Hexamethylene Diisocyanate: Uses, sources and potential exposure, acute and chronic health hazard information, and more

Exposure Limits and Health Effects

Exposure Limit Limit Values HE Codes Health Factors and Target Organs
OSHA Permissible Exposure Limit (PEL) Not established
National Institute for Occupational Safety and Health (NIOSH) Recommended Exposure Limit (REL) 0.005 ppm
(0.035 mg/m3) TWA

0.020 ppm
(0.140 mg/m3) Ceiling
(10 minutes
HE9 Sensitization
HE11 Upper respiratory tract irritation, decrease in respiratory function
American Conference of Governmental Industrial Hygienists (ACGIH) Threshold Limit Value (TLV) (1985) 0.005 ppm
(0.034 mg/m3) TWA
HE9 Asthmatic/respiratory sensitization-like responses
HE14 Eye, nose, and throat irritation
CAL/OSHA PELs 0.005 ppm
(0.034 mg/m3) TWA
HE9 Asthmatic/respiratory sensitization-like responses
HE14 Eye, nose, and throat irritation
  • National Toxicology Program (NTP) carcinogenic classification: Not listed
  • International Agency for Research on Cancer (IARC) carcinogenic classification: Not listed
  • EPA carcinogenic classification: Not listed
  • EPA Inhalation Reference Concentration (RfC): 1 x 10-5 mg/m3
  • Agency for Toxic Substances and Disease Registry (ATSDR) Inhalation Minimal Risk Level (MRL): 0.00003 ppm (intermediate); 0.00001 ppm (chronic)
  • NIOSH Immediately Dangerous to Life or Health (IDLH) concentration: Not listed

Notes on Other Potential Health Effects

  1. Contact with hexmethylene diisocyante can irritate and burn the eyes and skin. Skin contact may cause blisters. Eye contact may cause corneal damage. Exposure can cause headache, nausea, vomiting, and irritability. High levels of exposure can irritate the lungs and cause coughing and/or shortness of breath. Long-term exposure may cause skin sensitization and an allergic response with itching and skin rash. After an allergy develops, future exposure can result in cough, wheezing, and shortness of breath (Pohanish 2002).

Date Last Revised: 9/6/2012

Literature Basis

Monitoring Methods used by OSHA

Laboratory Sampling/Analytical Method:
  • Glass Fiber Filter (37 mm open face) coated with 1.0 mg 1-(2-pyridyl) piperazine
  • analytical solvent: (90:10) Acetonitrile: Dimethylsulfoxide
  • maximum volume: 15 Liters
  • maximum flow rate: 1.0 L/min
  • current analytical method: High Performance Liquid Chromatography; HPLC/UV/FLU
  • method reference: OSHA Analytical Method (OSHA 42)
  • method classification: Fully Validated
  • note: OSHA personnel may obtain filters from SLTC and refrigerate until use.
Bulk Method:
  • Limit the amount of bulk submitted to one gram or one mL.

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