Preliminary research on the determination of asbestos in bulk materials by polarized light microscopy was carried out both to assess the current status of the asbestos content of labware in Kyoto University and to validate analytical techniques for asbestos measurement. We detected asbestos (chrysotile, amosite, tremolite) in 14 of 31 samples investigated. Fibrous particles very similar to chrysotile were identified in a sample of heat-resistant material. Because this sample was found to be formed of the natural mineral sepiolite, and also because its optical properties may have changed due to its thermal history, there is a risk of a false positive for asbestos on ordinary observation. Therefore we examined the relationship between heat-treatment temperature and dispersion staining as well as the extent of color changes in multiple immersion liquids for chrysotile and sepiolite. On this basis, we carried out discriminant analysis for asbestos and non-asbestos by polarized light microscopy. We conclude that the fibrous chrysotile-like particles in the heat-resistant sample were sepiolite partially changed by heating.
Eleven volatile organic compounds (VOCs), such as benzene and chloroform, and hydrogen fluoride (HF) were measured using gas detector tubes in the working environment of Kyoto Institute of Technology from 2005 to 2009. The results obtained using gas detector tubes for 5 years were compared with those obtained using other methods. Acetone and methanol were measured in 60-80 % of the laboratories where 12 chemicals were used. Chloroform, toluene, n-hexane, ethyl acetate, and dichloromethane were measured in 40-50% of the target laboratories. Chloroform and ethyl acetate were detected in 40-55% and 30-70% of the laboratories where measurements were conducted, respectively. Benzene was almost undetectable at laboratories due to the use of fume hoods and alternative solvents. VOC measurement using gas detector tubes is simple, rapid and accurate, and the VOC concentrations were found to be almost in agreement with or somewhat higher than those obtained using other methods; thus, VOCs measurement by gas detector tubes is very effective for the working environment measurement in college, and it can be used for the risk assessment and management of chemicals.
Trades of unwanted reagents have been studied for five fiscal years (2005-2009) on University of Toyama, via relational database system for chemicals. There were total 635 reagents available at our online trading system (virtual stockroom), and 30.7% of reagents were reassigned to other laboratories for the period. As a result, these actions lead to save \1,044,814. Actually, this circulation system has been used by 40% of laboratories which use chemicals. For example, retiring professors registered most of their unexpended substances. On one hand, organic chemists tended to collect a lot of materials from others. Eighty five percent trades were achieved not intra-department but inter-department transactions. If there was no request for two months, remaindered things might be disposed. Basically, trade ratios depend on the number of users. In particular, the favorable chemicals were likely to be dealt which were used for washing or neutralization, such as organic solvents, acids, and alkaline reagents. In addition, unopened bottle were welcome conditions for pick up.
Calcium hydrogen phosphate dihydrate (DCPD) reacts with fluoride ion in aqueous solution and forms stable fluorapatite (FAp). This reaction has been investigated on prevention of dental caries. We have applied this reaction to immobilize fluoride in the environment. In this paper, we investigated applications reaction of DCPD to treatment of fluoride in waste water and waste gypsum board. We appeared that addition of calcium ion is effective to inhibit remaining phosphate ion in effluent and improvement of removal efficiency of fluoride in the wastewater. In order to confirm these phenomena, experiments using real wastewater under coexistence of calcium ion were carried out not only by measuring the fluoride concentration in the effluent, but also by characterizing the properties of the formed sludge. As a result, the DCPD method is suggested to be a very promising method for treatment of wastewater containing fluoride from the viewpoint of ecotechnology. On the other hand, immobilize fluoride in waste gypsum board were also examined. Mixing DCPD is very effective to immobilize fluoride in recycled soil made from construction sludge and recycled waste gypsum for long term.
We evaluated the data of working environment measurements of chemical materials, which is estimated at class 2 or 3 management division, in Tohoku University from 2005 to 2008, and examined present problems in environmental safety and health at University. According to these data, a few work places in our university needed the improvement for suitable work place. There are several environmental health and safety problems in there, which were mainly caused by work management. Then they have taken the necessary corrective measures to be suitable circumstances. We concluded that the work places circumstances in university are dependent upon the work management level by labors, researchers and students, so it is important for them to educate environmental health and safety, and develop their ability and mind to assess and manage the risk of their own work in their work place.
The Academic Consociation of Environmental Safety and Waste Management, Japan aided this project, 2007-2009. The liaison conference started for information exchange on chemicals management of universities, collages, and institutions. Advanced Chemicals Management Network System for Educational and Scientific Institutions (ACSES; Nonprofit Organization) was set up for promotion of planning and performance of unifying chemicals management of universities, collages, and institutions, by many universities etc. This project is helpful for providing consultation, educational assistance, information, database of chemicals on the market, and any other help concerning chemicals management.