Small‐Chamber Measurements of Chemical‐Specific Emission Factors for Drywall

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Imported drywall installed in U.S. homes is suspected of being a source of odorous and potentially corrosive indoor pollutants. To support an investigation of those building materials by the Consumer Products Safety Commission (CPSC), Lawrence Berkeley National Laboratory (LBNL) measured chemical-specific emission factors for 30 samples of drywall materials. Emission factors are reported for 75 chemicals and 30 different drywall samples encompassing both domestic and imported stock and incorporating natural, synthetic, or mixed gypsum core material. CPSC supplied all drywall materials. First the drywall samples were isolated and conditioned in dedicated chambers, then they were transferred to small chambers where emission testing was performed. Four sampling and analysis methods were utilized to assess (1) volatile organic compounds, (2) low molecular weight carbonyls, (3) volatile sulfur compounds, and (4) reactive sulfur gases. LBNL developed a new method that combines the use of solid phase microextraction (SPME) with small emission chambers to measure the reactive sulfur gases, then extended that technique to measure the full suite of volatile sulfur compounds. The testing procedure and analysis methods are described in detail herein. Emission factors were measured under a single set of controlled environmental conditions. The results are compared graphically for each method and in detailed tables for use in estimating indoor exposure concentrations.

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