Estimating the time-varying generation rate of acetic acid from an all-purpose floor cleaner

Susan Arnold, Gurumurthy Ramachandran, Hannah Kaup, Joseph Servadio

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

1 Scopus citations


Understanding the relationship between consumer product use and risk of adverse health outcomes facilitates appropriate risk management and product stewardship. A preferred method for estimating the systemic and respiratory tract exposure and dose tailored to cleaning products use has been proposed, refining previously issued exposure guidance. Consistent with other exposure and risk-assessment frameworks, it is dependent upon high-quality exposure determinant data that also serve as model inputs. However, as publicly available exposure determinant data are scarce, the risk assessor is left with the option of estimating determinants such as the generation rate or employing empirical methods to estimate them. When the exposure scenario involves a chemical mixture, estimating the generation rate may not be feasible. We present an approach for estimating the time-varying generation rate of an aqueous acetic acid mixture representative of the base formulation for many consumer and DIY cleaning products that was previously assessed in a screening-level assessment. The approach involved measuring the evaporation rate for a reasonable worst-case scenario under controlled conditions. Knowing the mass applied, a time-varying generation rate was estimated. To evaluate its portability, a field study was conducted in a home where measurements were collected in an all-purpose room with the exterior door open (Room 1) and closed (Room 2), and a bathroom (Room 3) using a portable Fourier Transform Infrared (FTIR) spectrophotometer. Acetic acid concentrations were modeled using two common indoor air models, the Well Mixed Room model. Measured and modeled acetic acid concentrations were compared, with the WMR 95% confidence intervals encompassing measured concentrations for all three rooms, supporting the utility of the approach used and portability of the generation rate derived from it.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)374-382
Number of pages9
JournalJournal of Exposure Science and Environmental Epidemiology
Issue number2
StatePublished - Mar 1 2020


  • acetic acid mixture
  • evaporation rate
  • exposure model
  • generation rate

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Epidemiology
  • Toxicology
  • Pollution
  • Public Health, Environmental and Occupational Health


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