Paints & Coatings Resource Center

Ask the Expert Question-and-Answer Archive

by Ron Joseph

April, 2004

Particulate Size in Painting Operations

Q. Is there any documentation that we can obtain to support the particulate size distribution on paint overspray. The Title V air permit we are in the process of renewing has this CAM applicability issue to deal with. As it stands we exceed the 100 TPY limit on the input of the control device [filter] in the exterior paint booth. If we could document that some of the overspray exceeds the PM10 size it might help eliminate the CAM rule.

A. In recent months I have been involved in a legal case regarding paint overspray and have spent many hours trying to find documentation on particulate size distribution. Unfortunately, I've seen nothing in the literature that was helpful. In the end I conducted my own simulated tests to get an idea of what the particulate sizes might be and in this regard I was somewhat successful.

It may be behoove you to conduct your own simulated tests and present those to your permit engineer. Even if you were to find documentation that relates to some other painting operations it would probably not have much relevance to your situation.

If you would like to discuss this with me in greater detail please do not hesitate to call me at (408) 446 - 9736.

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