Re: ORGLIST: Normal odor level in an organic lab

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From: John S. Roberts (JohnSRoberts$##$worldnet.att.net)
Date: Sun Feb 04 2001 - 17:54:34 EST


Joe:

What you didn't tell us was what kinds of chemicals you are working with.
I've spent most of my life working with organic sulfur compounds, and ppm
levels would be extremely noticeable. We had great hoods, charcoal filters
on the hoods, but just tracking bottles back and forth to the hoods from
outside storage was enough to make the lab stinky on occasion.

So, let us know, and we may be able to give you some hints.

John Roberts
JohnSRoberts$##$Worldnet.att.net
----- Original Message -----
From: "Bozell, Joe" <joe_bozell$##$nrel.gov>
To: "Multiple recipients of list orglist" <orglist$##$dq.fct.unl.pt>
Sent: Friday, February 02, 2001 5:17 PM
Subject: ORGLIST: Normal odor level in an organic lab


> Dear colleagues,
>
> This is not precisely a chemical question, but is related, and perhaps a
> situation you've had to deal with also. Any help would be greatly
> appreciated.
>
> I am currently in discussions with our local safety representative
regarding
> "fugitive odors" in our laboratory. He equates it with chemical
> contamination, while I equate it with the normal odors associated with
> synthetic organic research. The ventilation in our lab, both with regard
to
> air exchanges/hour (12) and flow at the hoods (>100 fpm at 18" sash
height)
> has been checked and exceeds specs for our building. Moreover, he has
> checked our laboratory with an electronic "sniffer" and has found less
than
> ppm levels of the chemicals to which the probe was sensitive. Almost all
> chemical manipulations in our lab are done in the hood. However, organic
> chemistry is not one of the major efforts at our facility. More
engineering
> is carried out, thus, our work has odors different from the engineering
> research that goes on.
>
> We are currently being encouraged to add even more, expensive, mechanical
> controls to try and eliminate the odors. However, I would like to know
what
> the safety literature might say about this problem. Can anyone point me to
> some hard data about what is acceptable and "normal" for an organic
> laboratory? Is any odor harmful? If the specific chemical or chemicals
> cannot be identified, should one assume there is a problem and a danger?
> What is a reasonable and prudent response that will make sure that the
> occupants of the lab are not being exposed unnecessarily to harmful
> materials?
>
> thanks for any help,
>
> Joe Bozell
> Principal Scientist
> National Renewable Energy Laboratory
> Golden, CO
> USA
> __________________
>
> ORGLIST - Organic Chemistry Mailing List
> Website / Archive / FAQ: http://www.orglist.net/
> List coordinator: Joao Aires de Sousa (jas$##$mail.fct.unl.pt)
>
>

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