Behind the respirator approval process

Behind the respirator approval process


One of the main functions of the NIOSH National Personal Protective Technology Laboratory (NPPTL) is to approve the use of the ventilator in the occupational environment by assessing compliance with the requirements of Title 42 of the Code of Federal Regulations (42 CFR 84). Respirators are widely used in the medical, agricultural, mining and emergency response industries. Since each respirator must pass the NIOSH respirator approval procedure before entering the workplace, the user can rely on their respirator to ensure their safety.


You know that your respirator should be approved by NIOSH. But what does this mean? Have you ever thought about assessing what these respirators involve, or who is evaluating and testing?


When manufacturers want to produce and sell respirators for use in the workplace, they must first submit the respirator to NIOSH and pass a series of design suitability, quality assurance and laboratory performance procedures to obtain NIOSH approval. Engineers are involved in every step of the process. In the case of closed-circuit escape breathing (CCER), NPPTL engineers form a team with physical scientists, quality assurance experts and technicians to review applications, evaluate quality procedures and conduct approval tests by evaluating: oxygen delivery capacity and stressors Such as inhaled oxygen, inhaled carbon dioxide, respiratory resistance and wet bulb temperature. These tests are performed on an Automatic Respiratory Metabolism Simulator (ABMS) that replicates respiratory behavior (respiratory frequency, respiration, flow, temperature and humidity), oxygen consumption and carbon dioxide production.