Friday, February 17, 2012

Cancer-causing chemicals found in chip factories

Workers at chip-making lines may be exposed to
carcinogens such as benzene and formaldehyde.
A new study found traces of leukemia-linked carcinogens in semiconductor-producing factories and other chip makers, according to the Korea government.

The study was conducted between 2009 and 2011 at various factories and found low levels of benzene, formaldehyde and radiation.

While the levels were below those generally deemed a health hazard, this is the first time a study found evidence of these chemicals in chip factories, something that civic groups and employees have been saying for a long time.

At Samsung, workers became worried after some employees died of leukemia while or after working at the chip manufacturing lines, according to an article in the Korea Herald.

Benzene was found in 0.00038 ppm and 0.00990 ppm in two different chip-making lines ― both below the permitted 1 ppm.

The levels should not pose a health risk to workers exposed to them for eight hours a day over a lifetime, officials said.

The study also showed higher than permitted levels of arsenic, a carcinogen linked to lung cancer.

Source: Korea Herald

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