Tallinn University of Technology

Recently, the scientists of the Department of Business Administration and the Department of Chemical Engineering at Tallinn University of Technology completed a cooperation project that dealt with determining air pollution in work environment.

One of the leaders of the research, Professor of the Chair of Labour Environment and Safety at Tallinn University of Technology, Piia Tint said: "In the research project the existence of chemicals and dust particles were investigated in tens of Estonian companies. For this purpose a portable air particle counter (for measuring dust) and an infrared spectrometer (for measuring airborne chemicals) were used."

According to the other party of the research project, Professor of the Chair of Chemical Engineering Vahur Oja, both dust and chemicals can cause, in addition to direct health damage, also explosive situations depending on their concentration.

Today, the scientists of Tallinn University of Technology have the capability to carry out work environment investigations related to dust and chemicals and assess the risks and risk factors involved. As a result of the research, in addition to mapping the situation, models for improvement will be developed.

The work environment air pollution measurement service is most often used by Estonian industrial enterprises (in particular in timber, furniture and rubber industry) to determine airborne chemicals in their production facilities.

According to Piia Tint, the research results obtained so far indicate that Estonian enterprises take so much care of their work environment that hazardous or life-threatening air pollution does not occur there.

"There is a growing demand for competent inspection of our living environment (of which our everyday work environment is a constituent part). This means that the importance of occupational health and safety is recognised not only in Estonia but this is a global phenomenon," Piia Tint adds.

Kersti Vähi, TTU Research Administration Office