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Spatial Uncertainty in Modeling Inhalation Exposure to Volatile Organic Compounds in Response to the Application of Consumer Spray Products


(1) Background: Mathematical exposure modeling of volatile organic compounds (VOCs) in consumer spray products mostly assumes instantaneous mixing in a room. This well-mixed assumption may result in the uncertainty of exposure estimation in terms of spatial resolution. As the inhalation exposure to chemicals from consumer spray products may depend on the spatial heterogeneity, the degree of uncertainty of a well-mixed assumption should be evaluated under specific exposure scenarios. (2) Methods: A room for simulation was divided into eight compartments to simulate inhalation exposure to an ethanol trigger and a propellant product. Real-time measurements of the atmospheric concentration in a room-sized chamber by proton transfer reaction mass spectrometry were compared with mathematical modeling to evaluate the non-homogeneous distribution of chemicals after their application. (3) Results: The well-mixed model overestimated short-term exposure, particularly under the trigger spray scenario. The uncertainty regarding the different chemical proportions in the trigger did not significantly vary in this study. (4) Conclusions: Inhalation exposure to aerosol generating sprays should consider the spatial uncertainty in terms of the estimation of short-term exposure.

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