Advanced Photon Source

An Office of Science National User Facility

Experiment Hazard Class 14.3 – Engineered Nanomaterials - Unbound


This hazard classification applies to all experiments involving the use of unbound engineered nanomaterials as samples and preparatory work with dispersable nanomaterials. Other hazard classifications and their associated hazard controls may also apply to experiments in this hazard class. As with all potentially hazardous materials the quantity needed at the beamline should be kept to a minimum for the experiment. These guidances are not sufficient for handling active nanomaterials or entities. A more detailed review would be required.

Experiment Category

Experiments in this Experiment Hazard Class are always categorized as High Risk. With the implementation of appropriate controls it is possible to lower the risk level to Medium.

Hazard Control Verification Statements

Engineered Controls – Controls required in LMS-PROC-83, "Safe Handling of Engineered Nanomaterials" and any agreed upon in the review of the experiment by APS and Beamline Management. Activities that involve handling of dispersible engineered nanoparticles should be subject to the most rigorous control regimens, e.g., working in glove boxes, glovebags, or ventilated partial enclosures like laboratory chemical hoods, wearing gloves, or wearing respirators. Control of skin contact and particle inhalation should be addressed for dispersible nanoparticles. Maintenance operations on normally sealed vessels or ventilation systems may create hazards requiring exposure of controls.

Procedural Controls – The need for procedural controls will be determined in a review of the activity. Items such as wet wiping methods, waste generation, medical surveillance,and proper PPE should be addressed.

Design Reviews and Equipment Inspections – Any experiments involving loose nanomaterials in containment will require a review. This review may involve personnel from Argonne EQO Division and sufficient time should be allowed for the review prior to beginning any work.


  • ESH590, Engineered Nanomaterials Orientation.
  • Additional training beyond APS core training completion will be determined by a review of the proposed activities.

Signs and Labeling – Containers with nanomaterials must be labeled "Caution - Engineered Nanomaterials" per LMS-PROC-83

Personal Protective Equipment – Gloves, Lab coat and safety glasses (with sideshields) are recommended for normal handling of dispersible nanomaterials. Respiratory protection may be required as determined in a review of the activity. Gloves must be plastic or rubber, selected to also protect against any solvent used and long enough to cover wrist jewelry. Use of walk-off mat or shoe covers or equivalent during spill clean up activities.

Dosimetry and Monitoring – No special dosimetry or monitoring is required. The Argonne Medical Department provides routine medical surveillance for employees identified through the JHQ as working with Engineered Nanomaterials.

Shipping Engineered Nanomaterials – Dispersible nanomaterials (includes unbound nanomaterials and nanomaterials in liquid suspension) are to be shipped or transported to Argonne and returned to the home institution through Argonne Shipping & Receiving Department. Nanomaterials in dispersible form transported in buildings or on-site must be in labeled secondary nonbreakable containers. See LMS-PROC-84, "Packaging, Transfer, and Shipment of Unbound Engineered Nanomaterials for transport requirements".

Waste Management and Spill Response – Spills of nanomaterials are to be treated as hazardous waste cleanup and the materials properly disposed through arrangements with Argonne WMO. Nanomaterial waste must be labeled as Hazardous Waste containing Nanomaterials. Damp cleaning methods with soaps or cleaning oils is preferred. Cleaning cloths should be properly disposed. Drying and reuse of contaminated cloths can result in re-dispersion of particles. Use of commercially available wet or electrostatic microfiber cleaning cloths may also be effective in removing particles from surfaces with minimal dispersion into the air. Energetic cleaning methods such as dry sweeping or the use of compressed air should be avoided or only used with precautions that assure particles suspended by the cleaning action are trapped by HEPA filters. If vacuum cleaning is employed, care should be taken that the HEPA filters are installed properly and bags and filters changed according to manufacturer's recommendations.

Experiment Authorization

Unless otherwise noted in the approved experiment safety plan, the PSC Deputy Associate Laboratory Director of Operations delegates the authority to authorize an experiment in this hazard class to any of the persons in the beamline personnel that appear in the list of Beamline Manager personnel authorized to approve experiments and a member of the APS Experiment Review Board.

Hazard Control Verification

The PSC Deputy Associate Laboratory Director of Operations delegates responsibility for verifying that required controls are in place to the experiment On-site Spokesperson, Beamline Management, and a member of the APS Experiment Safety Review Board.


Reviewed: March 7, 2017