A rotating bluff-body disc for reduced variability in wind tunnel aerosol studies

Kirsten A. Koehler, T. Renee Anthony, Michael Van Dyke, John Volckens

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle

Abstract

A rotating bluff-body disc (RBD) was developed to reduce spatiotemporal variability associated with sampling supermicron aerosol in low-velocity wind tunnels. The RBD is designed to rotate eight personal aerosol samplers around a circular path in a forward-facing plane aligned with the wind tunnel cross section. Rotation of the RBD allows each sampler to traverse an identical path about the wind tunnel cross section, which reduces the effects of spatial heterogeneity associated with dispersing supermicron aerosol in low-velocity wind tunnels. Samplers are positioned on the face of the RBD via sampling ports, which connect to an air manifold on the back of the disc. Flow through each sampler was controlled with a critical orifice or needle valve, allowing air to be drawn through the manifold with a single pump. A metal tube, attached to this manifold, serves as both the axis of rotation and the flow conduction path (between the samplers and the vacuum source). Validation of the RBD was performed with isokinetic samplers and 37-mm cassettes. For facing-the-wind tests, the rotation of the RBD significantly decreased intra-sampler variability when challenged with particle diameters from 1 to 100 μm. The RBD was then employed to determine the aspiration efficiency of Institute of Occupational Medicine (IOM) personal samplers under a facing-the-wind condition. Operation of IOM samplers on the RBD reduced the between-sampler variability for all particle sizes tested.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)86-96
Number of pages11
JournalAnnals of Occupational Hygiene
Volume55
Issue number1
DOIs
StatePublished - Jan 1 2011
Externally publishedYes

Keywords

  • IOM sampler
  • aerosol sampling
  • wind tunnel

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Public Health, Environmental and Occupational Health

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