Risk to nanoplatelet manufacturers
Posted Thu, 23 Feb 2012
Computer manufacturers working with nanoplatelets could be at risk from lung damage, according to a new study published in the journal ACS Nano.
Nanoplatelets are used in various technologies for their super-conductive properties but particularly for enhancing the electronic properties of touch screens. The disc-shaped particles are less than one carbon atom thick and are made from thin layers of carbon graphene.
Scientists at the University of Edinburgh looked into the impact on humans of the particles, which are invisible to the naked eye and stay airborne. The study found that the aerodynamic properties of the nanoplatelets means they are easily inhaled and can accumulate in the lungs and cause potential health problems.
More assessment of the potential hazards needs to be made, said Professor Ken Donaldson, chair of respiratory toxicology at the university, in order that appropriate health and safety measures can be taken for those involved in manufacturing.
Copyright Press Association 2012