Superfund Research Program
Safety and Health Management of Hazards Associated with Emerging Technologies
Project Leader: Gary Adamkiewicz
Grant Number: R25ES023635
Funding Period: 2013-2020
Harvard University School of Public Health (HSPH), Tulane University School of Public Health and Tropical Medicine, and the Massachusetts Institute of Technology are working together to develop graduate courses, executive and professional education courses, and distance learning courses related to the safety and health management of hazards associated with emerging technologies. A research consortium was assembled where researchers from the three partnering schools met and discussed developing active learning approaches to the new courses and identified candidate topics for the continuing and professional education, and distance learning courses.
New Course at Harvard
- As part of the project, researchers initiated a new Harvard course that will take the place of two existing 2.5-credit courses, Ventilation and Control of Noise and Vibration in the Workplace.
- This new 5-credit course on engineering control technologies will include training from the two previous courses, but will be updated to include new course material that emphasizes engineering control for emerging technologies (e.g., nanoparticle manufacturing and hydraulic fracking), respiratory protection, chemical protective clothing, and control of heat stress and biohazards.
- This new course will be required for all of our occupational hygiene students, as well as students concentrating in the new area of interest on Occupational Hazard Research and Management.
Surveys and Case Studies
- As part of the course Practice of Occupational Health, students conducted a survey of a cogeneration power plant to gain experience in recognizing hazards associated with cogeneration technology for steam, electricity, and chilled water generation including ultrafine particles, heat, noise, and combustion products.
- A case study entitled "Exposure to particulate matter and particle-bound polycyclic aromatic hydrocarbon (PPAH) associated with 3-D printing operations" was offered during another course, Analytical Methods and Exposure Assessment. The students concluded that elevated concentrations of both PPAH and ultrafine particles were associated with 3-D printing, and that workers in the vicinity of these printers could be exposed to high levels of these particles.