The main innovation of NanoHouse work is to study the environmental behaviour and the potential effects on health of actually released Engineered NanoParticles (“aged ENPs”). The work thus extends beyond the current research which focuses almost exclusively on pristine ENPs received directly from producers or synthesised in the laboratory. NanoHouse is comparing the actually released ENPs from coatings to pristine ENPs.
The project adopts a holistic approach covering the whole life cycle of ENPs containing paints and coatings to study their potential Environmental Health and Safety (EHS) impact in home building. NanoHouse develops a new concept of Life Cycle Thinking that combines two complementary aspects: on the one hand investigating the risks and opportunities during the nanoproduct life cycle, and on the other hand investigating and assessing the environmental impacts of the nanoproduct.
The project study the kinetics of the release of ENPs, understanding the release mechanisms from nanoproducts and characterisation of the whole mixture of particles released.
Furthermore, NanoHouse develops quantification methods and characterisation of ENPs in complex matrix and study new compartments: plants, and estimation of ENPs flows between soil, plant and water.
Finally NanoHouse quantifies ENPs airborne release during incineration process and evaluates the tightness of landfill geo-membranes against ENPs.