SANOWORK: towards a ''Safety by Design'' management of nanomaterials

A.L. Costa, M. Blosi, C. Del Pivo, S. Ortelli, D. Gardini

Keywords: safety by design, exposure, engineered nanomaterials


The growing importance of engineered nanomaterials (ENM) and their applications justifies the European successful promotion and growth of a nano-safety research. It is widely accepted that material designers, engineers, health and safety professionals, business leaders, should converge efforts to develop “Safety by design” tools and implementing safer manufacturing processes. The approach followed by the EU collaborative project,. SANOWORK, is in this direction. The main goal of Sanowork project is to identify a safe occupational exposure scenario by exposure assessment in real conditions within six industrial relevant manufacturing processing lines. Five risk remediation strategies based on a safety by design approach on ENMs surface are proposed and integrated within six ENMs manufacturing processing lines, becoming process extra-steps that are evaluated in terms of RISK and expected PERFORMANCES. The results will provide inputs for a COST-BENEFIT analysis and the development of a RISK INSURANCE MODEL exploitable by industrial sectors involved. The Sanowork prevention through design approach is applied to a “representative” pool of nanomaterials: ZrO2 (ceramic raw material); TiO2 and Ag (ceramic or textile photocatalytic/antibacterial surfaces); CNTs (polymeric nanocomposites); PA and TiO2 nanofibers (nanostructured membranes for water depuration system/photocatalysts).