Lead Exposure Testing


Atmospheric aerosol particles were sampled using an Aero Select in a semi-rural environment at the University of Kent near Canterbury in the UK. The aim of the project was to study how lead is distributed in the atmosphere. Lead levels in the atmosphere have reduced significantly since the introduction of lead free fuels, however lead and other heavy metals remain in the environment at measurable concentrations.

Although this project was focused primarily on airborne lead levels, this method could easy be applied to other airborne toxins including PAH, radioactive elements, platinum and other transition metals. This method could also give insights into the possible sources of pollution, potential abatement options and strategies for regulation.

ICP analysis of sample collected using the Aero Select was performed by CERAM Research Ltd. The data was then employed to calculate the mass-size distribution of airborne lead particles (figure 6.1).


Figure 6.1: A mass-size distribution of lead particles in atmospheric aerosol (dm/dLogD).



Boris Gorbunov, Robert Muir, Philip Jackson, Nicholas D. Priest. Evaluation of the Airborne Particles Fraction Responsible for Adverse Health. Aerosol and Air Quality Research, 1678–1692, (2013) ISSN: 1680-8584 print / 2071-1409 online.