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Towards Understanding the Health Aspects of the Processing of Lignocellulosic Fillers
* 1 , 2
1  Gdańsk University of Technology
2  Department of Analytical Chemistry, Gdańsk University of Technology


Health and safety issues should be addressed during the development and investigation of the industrial processes. In order to develop a sustainable process and fully evaluate its benefits and drawbacks for its optimization, it is crucial to determine its impact on the surrounding environment. This study aimed to assess the emission of volatile organic compounds during the modification of lignocellulosic fillers with passive dosimetry. Two types of processes were investigated: diisocyanate treatment of commercial lignocellulosic fillers in a batch mixer and thermo-mechanical treatment of brewers’ spent grain using a twin-screw extruder. The presence of multiple terpenes and terpenoids was detected during the processing of fillers. The main compounds detected during modification were camphene, 3-carene, limonene, α-pinene, and cymenes. These compounds can show the irritating and allergic character, according to the Globally Harmonized System of Classification and Labelling of Chemicals, as well as NFPA 704: Standard System for the Identification of the Hazards of Materials for Emergency Response. Some of them are also characterized by relatively low values of flash point, even below 40 °C. Therefore, their emissions during the modification of cellulose materials should be carefully monitored, and proper precautions need to be taken.

Keywords: Lignocellulosic fillers; volatile organic compounds; emissions; brewers’ spent grain; modification