Wednesday, May 25, 2011


Today we were welcomed into the Materion Brush facility in Elmore, OH. They manufacture and produce beryllium products. They walked us through the different manufacturing processes they have on site, including extrusion, coils, rod and tubes, and pure beryllium. We learned about the safety procedures put in place to protect the workers from beryllium exposure, and were provided with an in depth discussion of medical issues related to beryllium exposure. Dr. Deubner discussed the research he has conducted on why and how they set their exposure limits for their workplace.

For the tour we donned PPE, including full face PAPR, tyvek suits, and booties. By wearing PPE, it gives our participants a sense of what workers experience as they have to work in PPE ensembles. And looking back to our visit at NIOSH, we can see the value of the research they are conducting on PPE and respiratory protective devices.

Thanks to Dr.Deubner, Mike Berakis, Keith Smith, and all the other staff at Materion Brush for hosting us and provide such a valuable learning opportunity for our program.


Richard said...

Nice tour of the Materion/Brush Wellman site. Most important thing I learned is how difficult it can be to work while dressed in a Tyvek suit, earplugs, and PAPR.

Stephanie said...

It was great to visit the Materion/Brush-Wellman plant. It gave me an appreciation for the occupational hazard of heat stress. Wearing a Tyvek suit and PAPR while working is a real challenge for workers!

NYNJERC Blog said...

OSHA has a campaign to reduce heat stress. Resources are available on their web site,

Some of the resources are available in Spanish.

Connie said...

The most amazing and educational of all the toured sites from an occupational medicine perspective. It is really challenging to prevent or identify beryllium related disease.

NYNJERC Blog said...

Go to the NIOSH web page for lots of information on beryllium (, including the 2011 document "Preventing Sensitization and Disease from Beryllium Exposure" that was mentioned at our visit to Materion.