Aspergillus in Ventilation Systems

Sun May 7 01:39:18 EST 1995

Aspergillus niger, along with a few other species, was implicated in a 
recent article in Environmental Microbiology (or some such, sorry) in 
having a potential role in 'sick-building' syndrome.  Apparently it is 
able to digest fiberglass, releasing toxic volatile compounds.  When your 
HVAC ducts are made of fiberglass, voila!

seeligerc at

On Sat, 6 May 1995, Richard Byrd wrote:

> Several big questions.  What species of Aspergillus?  And you say
> "probably" in ducts.  What is basis for saying this?
> If there is a severe contamination situation with a toxigenic or
> pathogenic species, e.g., A. fumigatus, or A. versicolor for example,
> then there are very definitely precautions to be taken.  Classic
> article on this that I know of is by P.Morey from ASHRAE Transactions I
> believe.
> Tell me more about the situation and I can give you more specific
> guidance.
> Richard R. Byrd
> Director, Indoor Air Quality Investigations
> Machado Environmental Corp.
> Glendale, Calif.
> "All that we are is the result of what we have thought.  It is founded 
> upon our thoughts. It is made up of our thoughts.... By oneself evil is
> done. By oneself one suffers.  By oneself evil is left undone. By 
> oneself one is purified.... Strenuousness is the path of immortality,
> sloth the path of death.... those who are slothful are as if dead 
> already." - Gautama Buddha's answer to Democrats.
> In <3obml9$c17 at> proddy at (Peter E. Roddy) writes: 
> >
> >I have been asked to "find" information on Aspergillus.  The fungi is
> >probably in our heating and air conditioning ducts that are scheduled
> >for cleaning with a water solution.  While I have located a lot of
> back-
> >ground info, I have not been able to find specific recommendation for
> >employees that are to clean the ducts that contain this fungi and
> perhaps
> >others as well.
> >
> >Can anyone offer some specifics (i.e., full face respirator with HEPA
> >filters, gloves, tyvek suits, etc.?)  If you know of an article I
> should
> >read I would very much appreciate that information also.
> >
> >My primary concern is to provide employees that best possible
> protection
> >while they accomplish this task.
> >
> >Thank you for any assistance.
> >
> >Peter Roddy, Manager
> >Environmental Health and Safety
> >California State University, Sacramento
> >Internet:  proddy at

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