Society For Risk Analysis Annual Meeting 2017

Session Schedule & Abstracts

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Common abbreviations

Symposium: DOD Efforts to Advance Risk Assessment of Nanomaterials

Room: Salon D   3:30 pm–5:00 pm

Chair(s): Jo Anne Shatkin

Sponsored by Emerging Nanoscale Materials Specialty Group

The emergence of manufactured nanomaterials (MN) in new technologies creates a need for clear processes to assess any novel hazards beyond conventional risk assessment approaches. The US Department of Defense (DOD) is advancing the science and practice through methods development, standards and new technology assessments. This symposium presents several current efforts within DOD that advance knowledge, methods and practices for risk assessments of MNs.

T4-D.1  3:30 pm  A DOD Framework for Examining Possible Health and Environmental Impacts Of Nanomaterials for Use in Weapon Systems. Rak A*, Underwood PM, Shatkin JA, Ede J; Noblis and Office of the Assistant Secretary of Defense (Energy, Installations, and Environment)

Abstract: Emerging applications of nanotechnology in the DoD are leading to improved technologies that bring significant advances in capability to the warfighter. However, the improved properties introduced by engineered nanomaterials (ENMs) are not without caveat and risks associated with human and environmental exposure that should be considered during development of technologies enabled by ENMs. This presentation will discuss recent organizational guidance that encourages identification and collection of information needed to understand the environmental and human-health hazards of ENMs. The guidance describes a four step approach to collecting data that is tied to the existing DoD System Acquisition Process. Collection of chemical, physical, and toxicological data occurs in parallel with DoD’s overall systems’ performance evaluation process. The objective for collecting these data is to inform tradeoff, design, supportability, and sustainability decisions to improve overall environmental safety and occupational health aspects of weapons system throughout the system’s lifecycle. Collection of chemical, physical, and toxicological data on ENMs will enable Program Managers to make informed programmatic decisions regarding risk management measures for handling, use, maintenance, repair, update and disposal throughout a system’s life cycle while ensuring the health of the warfighter, minimizing costs, and maintaining system schedules.

T4-D.2  3:50 pm  Quantifying release from nano and advanced material enabled products. Brame JA, Alberts E, Poda AR, Kennedy AJ*; US Army Engineer Research and Development Center

Abstract: The same unique properties of Manufactured Nanomaterials (MNs) and Advanced Materials (AMs) that make them desirable for new product applications may also increase their environmental health and safety (EHS) uncertainty, leading to high risk prioritization under the reformed Toxic Substances Control Act (Frank Lautenberg Chemical Safety for the 21st Century Act), and potential delays in production. EHS testing and risk assessment of MNs—and more recently AMs—now necessarily includes understanding the fate and transport of these materials in complex matrices as well as additional knowledge about how the product is used and the release of MNs/AMs from the product during use, including any transformations that occur during those releases. However, these release testing processes constitute one of the least studied sources of EHS risk for MN/AM-enabled products, and therefore contribute significantly to EHS uncertainty. Abrasion testing is an aggressive form of release testing (that can be performed in combination with other environmental challenges, such as weathering) to identify potential release and entry of MNs/AMs into the environment, where they can interact with human and ecological receptors. In this presentation, we use a modified Taber abrader system to test release of MNs from several case studies, including an anticorrosive paint containing CNTs, a self-cleaning cement containing TiO2, a nitrocellulose material, and several reference materials. Results show the capability of the analytical methods for assessing and characterizing released materials, and provide relevant examples of how to use this type of testing to make risk-informed decisions. Additionally, we will present a novel calibration method to establish a “limit of detection” for identification of released NMs. This analysis is the first of its kind, and starts to resolve some of the uncertainty inherent in risk assessment and EHS impacts of MNs/AMs, particularly in providing some level of confidence in cases where no material is released (i.e., trying to prove a negative).

T4-D.3  4:10 pm  Important Considerations in the Risk Assessment of DOD Relevant Nanoscale Materials. Ede JD*, Shatkin JA; Vireo Advisors, LLC

Abstract: Nanoscale materials are being incorporated in an increasing number of technologies, but have challenges associated with assessing their safety over traditional chemicals. The US Department of Defense (DoD) has spear-headed several efforts to advance the risk assessment of nanomaterials and nano-enabled technologies. Among these efforts is the development of a framework to evaluate the safety of nanoscale materials by guiding the collection of chemical, physical and toxicological information relevant for nanomaterial risk evaluation. Several resources were created that aided in the development of this framework, and highlight important considerations in the risk assessment of DOD relevant nanoscale materials and nano-enabled technologies. This talk will describe some of these important efforts, their contribution to the framework, and how they help inform the risk assessment of nanomaterials.

T4-D.4  4:30 pm  Assessing the global risk of nanotechnology-enabled weapons proliferation. Nichols GP*; Homeland Defense and Security Information Analysis Center (HDIAC)

Abstract: Nanoscale research and engineering, spurred by robust funding programs in the United States and other nations, has risen over the past 17 years, making nanotechnology pervasive throughout society. The advent of nanotechnology brings concerns that its applications could be used for nefarious purposes, either in small-scale attacks or potentially to create weapons of mass destruction. A large portion of global nanotechnology research already occurs under the auspices of military guidance, and for obvious reasons, most weapons development happens in classified space and is not available to the general public. Increasingly challenging is that civilian and military research on nanotechnology overlap, which leads many to fear a further reduction in transparency. Because of breakthroughs in technology, increased availability of information on the internet, and substantial reductions in the cost of equipment, new fears revolve around non-state actors acquiring the necessary materials and personnel to develop new weapon types without the need for traditional research programs. Since weaponization of nanotechnology is most likely in its infancy, early stages of development would first use nanotechnology to enhance current weapon types rather than create new classes of weapons. Reports of individual events utilizing weapons based on nanotechnology or claims of engineered nanomaterials being used as weapons have already occurred. HDIAC is currently conducting an assessment of existing global capabilities (military and civilian) that could be related to nanotechnology weapons research and development and is evaluating the likelihood of use regarding these technologies. Information from this assessment will support planning efforts of federal agencies involved in protecting against attacks, enhance the response of first responders and emergency managers who respond to events, and provide necessary information for successful diplomacy related to combatting proliferation.

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