Research @ LAESEC
Aerosol emission and exposure from metal fabrication and machining
Welding, plasma cutting, grinding, sanding, and machining generate metal dusts and fume due to their high-energy high temperature nature. Depending on the metal pieces, the fume contains toxins such as hexavalent chromium, nickel, and manganese. More importantly, the sizes of the particulate metals are in submicron to ultrafine range which are favorable of aveoler deposition. [detail]
"bring your toys, we weld for free!"
* Disclaimer: muffler is not a toy.
Emerging aerosol exposure from various processes
The world sure evolves fast, and so does the aerosol exposure. Aerosol exposures on Venus? No, we are not going to study that any sooner. We aim at improving understanding of aerosol exposure from new and old scenarios like gun range shooting, food truck cooking, 3-D metal printing, laser engraving, and e-cigarette vaping. [detail]
A low-cost desktop 3-D printer.
Pulmonary toxicity of aerosol in the occupational environment
Nanoparticles pose great health challenges upon inhalation. Are the current toxicological studies really physiological relevant to the respiratory exposure? At LAESEC, we try to utilize more novel low-cost in-vitro experiments to study the respiratory deposition, bioaccessibility, cytotoxicity, and biokinetic modeling of aerosols and nanoparticles. [detail]
Innovative engineering control to reduce aerosol exposure
Devising the control technology is important after characterizing the exposure and risks of aerosols. The next generation of engineering control technologies will go beyond just ventilation. E.g., we developed amorphous silica encapsulation (ASE) technology to modify the surface of aerosol to reduce its toxicity. Another example is a super anti-oxidant modified filtered facemask to prevent the inhalation of metal oxide.[detail]
Air pollution and air quality studies
The state of Oklahoma has an interesting combination of extreme weather and ubiquitous oil/gas industry. Wondering why the past winter is long and dry, maybe it has something to do with the ambient aerosols. Potential air pollution issues caused by fracking and flaring are our study target. We are also developing a drone-based passive sampler for detecting air pollution on different altitudes.[detail]
Total worker health and community-based participatory research (CBPR) to solve health problem
Solving the environmental and occupational health problems take more than laboratory and field work. Total worker health is a concept to incorporate both traditional occupational health research and health promotion sciences. CBPR was proven to be a very effective method, when study objects in the community get a chance to participate in the design and execution of the research. [detail]
Apply the latest informational technology on health/engineering education
Transferring the knowledge we learned from laboratory to the students, professions, and public is critical. That is why we will play with the most "modern" technology to aid disseminating our research findings: GPS-based smartphone apps, NFC tags, google glasses, 3-D printer, and even more. [detail]