Potential for recognition of airborne asbestos fibres from spatial laser scattering profiles
Kaye, Paul H.
This Short Communication describes some preliminary results of research which seeks to develop a method by which individual airborne asbestos fibres may be detected in real-time within a contaminated environment. The method proposes using an analysis of the spatial laser scattering profile (i.e. the complex manner in which individual particles scatter laser light), recorded from individual airborne particles, as a means of classifying the particles in terms of their morphological characteristics. Scattering profiles have been recorded from both crocidolite and chrysotile fibres and these display differentiating features which suggest that in certain cases it may be possible to discriminate each type of fibre from other airborne particulates. Examples of scattering profiles are presented and methods of automated pattern recognition, which are currently under development, are briefly discussed.