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Comprendre les situations d’exposition aux nanoparticules par l’intégration de l’activité de travail à la mesure : vers une construction de la prévention

Abstract : The recent development of nanotechnologies has led to potential exposures to nanoparticles in a variety of workplaces. A better understanding of occupational exposures to nanoparticles represents a major stake for prevention stakeholders. These exposures require an overhaul of, and perhaps a break from traditional metrology and prevention approaches, as they are challenged by the particular characteristics of nanoparticles. In this context, this thesis focuses on the development of a transdisciplinary methodology integrating work activity analysis with measurement in order to produce knowledges on exposure to nanoparticles and its control.From the construction and the validation of a methodology between specialists in nanoparticle measurement, epidemiology and ergonomics, our results follow three axes. 1) The systematic review of the literature on current recommendations for assessing occupational exposures to nanoparticles highlights the existence of 23 documents focusing on the measurement of manufactured nanoparticles only, excluding nanoparticles emitted unintentionally by some industrial processes. In addition, these recommendations for preventionists must evolve to take better account of work activity and become operational. 2) The exposure assessment method developed in this thesis work is based on the mobilization of the company's stakeholders to gather information on potential exposure situations. Then, real-time as well as time averaged aerosol measurements, accompanied by heart rate recording, were synchronized with videos of work situations. A breakdown at different time scales, at the work activity stage or in more detailed action carried out by the operator, revealed real exposure situations to nanoparticles, and characterized the associated exposure levels, taking into account the physical intensity of the work. 3) We show that discussions with operators during confrontation interviews involving real-time measurement synchronized to videos of the work activity, made it possible to make these exposure situations and their determinants visible, in the form of “typical exposure situations”. Presenting the results in association with the work activity analysis in the companies contributes to understanding and questioning the regulated safety practices to make them change. It is through these collective exchanges that the determinants of exposure are discovered, allowing to the company’s stakeholders to improve exposure control. The use of exposure situations is also a means of influencing design projects by transferring requirements for conception or prevention. It therefore becomes possible to expand exposure assessment to nanoparticles and contribute to collectively build safety within innovation.
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Louis Galey. Comprendre les situations d’exposition aux nanoparticules par l’intégration de l’activité de travail à la mesure : vers une construction de la prévention. Toxicologie. Université de Bordeaux, 2019. Français. ⟨NNT : 2019BORD0089⟩. ⟨tel-02318379⟩

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