- Publication of the Best Practices guide by December 2014, including hard and electronic copies .
- A complete description of the adverse effects posed by the use of nanofillers based on the release and migration potential, and the physicochemical, toxicological and ecotoxicological properties of the most common nanofillers and nanocomposites for packaging applications.A complete description of the current exposure scenarios across the nanocomposites life cycle, including an in depth description of the existing operational conditions, efficient RMMs and measured exposure levels.
- Reliable data on the levels of submicron sized particles released to the environment on a life cycle basis, including a list of estimated release factors to air, surface fresh and marine water, waste water and soil for each relevant stage on the life cycle.
- New knowledge on the airborne behaviour of the target NMs, including new data on their aggregation/agglomeration patterns and deposition factors under the specific operative and environmental conditions of use presented in the nanocomposites production facilities.
- A complete description of the effectiveness of common respiratory protective equipment (RPE), skin protective equipment (SPE), protective clothing, and Engineering Controls (LEV systems and filtration) against common nanofillers applied at industrial scale
- A list of proven end-of-life treatments, including reliable data to demonstrate the applicability of material recycling, energy recovery and organic recycling.
- A detailed list of recommendations and best practices applicable at industrial scales, considering both economic viability and effectiveness.
- Organization of three workshops to support the training of end users and stakeholders in the use and implementation of the Best Practices when working with NMs and packaging nanocomposites.
- On line access to the results of the project, including workshop presentations, conference talks, publishable deliverables, as well as any other public report containing information of the project.
Best Practices Guide now Available ¡
For futher details contact:
Jose Luis Romero
Contribution to advancement of knowledge / technological progress
Our proposal, NanoSafePACK, deals with the current limitations in relation to the risks assessment methodologies and risk management measures. The current handbooks, guides and reports of research projects are not focused on specific nanoparticles used in the current industrial setting of the packaging industry, which can differ enormously from another industrial process involving the use of polymers and nanoparticles. At this stage, our solution results innovative due to the direct application to our members in particular SMEs and industrial settings, as well as provide valuable information to characterize the toxicological profile and potential risk of the new manufactured nanocomposites or also those placed on the market in the recent years.
Concerning safety issues, limited information exists in relation to the effectiveness of the risk management strategies; thus, the use of common risk management strategies can’t ensure the safety of workers due the special physical properties of the nanoparticles. In this sense, a risk management system is needed for workplaces involved in nanotechnology based products production and handling according to the precautionary principl. One of the key problems for such a risk management system is exposure assessment due to the evident lack of knowledge about the mechanism by which nanoparticles affect health and the high level of differences between nanoparticles behaviour and productive process. At this stage, our proposed work will assess the exposure in the real operative conditions of the nanocomposite manufacturers and users through the use of the most advanced techniques to quantify the airborne nanoparticles in ambient and workplace. Once the RTD develop the exposure assessment, the operative conditions will be modelled and reproduced in controlled conditions, improving the knowledge about the background effects and interactions between the nanoparticles or nanofillers employed with the polymeric matrix and their environment, and how such interactions modify the exposure and release patters. The result of these studies will provide a better understanding of the risk management measures that must be implemented in the industrial setting in order to control and mitigate the exposure to nanoparticles.
In relation to the nanocomposite safety, the commercial manufacture of nanoparticles is relatively new, so that, there isn’t consensus in relation to the potential migration of the nanofillers employed on the nanocomposite industry. In this sense, taken into account physicochemical properties of the nanofillers employed, the possibility of migration is likely. Therefore, manufactures of nanocomposites, with special attention to those who manufacture food contact materials, must predict the potential migration in order to protect the consumer’s health and comply with the current regulation. At this stage, our proposal will study the aspects concerning the migration of nanoparticles in the polymeric matrix, providing the SMEs with scientific and validate data to select the less hazardous nanofillers or predict the potential release to the end user.