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SILICERAM - Studies aiming at assisting legislation and encouraging continual improvement strategies in the field of respirable crystalline silica

  • 23423
  • CORDIS - PROJECTS 04/01/2011
  • RISULTATO

The traditional ceramics industry is divided into several sub-sectors: tiles, tableware, sanitary ware, refractory, bricks and roofing tiles. In order to manufacture these products the ceramic industry sometimes use powdered crystalline silica. For many years it has been recognised that inhalation of Respirable Crystalline Silica (RCS) can lead to silicosis, which ultimately leads to ill-health through breathing difficulties and even death. Since the 1930s sensible abatement practises have been developed to virtually eradicate the problem of silicosis.

At present different EU states have different limits for RCS. Within Europe the Scientific Committee on Occupational Exposure limits are working towards identifying a common EU position on mg/m3 levels. One of the difficulties associated with setting common exposure limits for workers is the fact that different forms of crystalline silica appear to pose different threats. A new input to the debate has been the decision by the International Agency on Research in Cancer (IARC) in 1997 to classify RCS as a category 1 carcinogen. Whilst striving for lower and lower mg/m3 limits is to be applauded, there is a potential danger that companies using RCS (especially SMEs) will be faced with extortionate abatement capital equipment costs, in-house administration / testing costs etc. to comply.

This could drive some companies to ignore legislation and so create a rise in the number of silicosis cases. Against the above background, the overall aim of this project is to provide legislators with useful data for defining RCS in air limits. Setting a single low limit to encourage continual improvement, but allowing concessions based on proven reduced risks associated with certain RCS forms is seen as a possible way forward. The project will focus on different industries of the ceramic sector: tiles, tableware, sanitary ware, refractory, bricks and roofing tiles.


Start date: 2004-10-01
End date: 2007-09-30

Duration: 36 months

Project Reference: 500896

Project cost: 2.22 million euro
Project Funding: 1.47 million euro

Subprogramme Area: 030404 Stand alone PV systems, SME-2 Research for SME associations
Contract type: SMEs-Collective research projects


Coordinatore: - Associazione Nazionale Dei Produttori Di Piastrelle Di Ceramica E Di Materiali Refrattari 
Altri Partecipanti

  • RST LTD - UNITED KINGDOM
  • CERAMICA FLAMINIA S.P.A - ITALY
  • ANCON TECHNOLOGIES LIMITED - UNITED KINGDOM
  • FRAUNHOFER GESELLSCHAFT ZUR FOERDERUNG DER ANGEWANDTEN FORSCHUNG E.V. - GERMANY
  • INSTITUTO DE TECNOLOGIA CERAMICA - AICE - SPAIN
  • CENTRO CERAMICO BOLOGNA, CENTRO DI RICERCA E SPERIMENTAZIONE PER L' INDUSTRIA CERAMICA - ITALY
  • SOCIETE FRANCAISE DE CERAMIQUE - FRANCE
  • MIDDLESEX UNIVERSITY - UNITED KINGDOM
  • BRITISH CERAMIC CONFEDERATION - UNITED KINGDOM
  • FACULTE DE MEDECINE - FRANCE
  • RESEARCH, DESIGN AND EXPERIMENTAL PRODUCTION INSTITUTE FOR CONSTRUCTIONS AND CONSTRUCTION MATERIALS - ROMANIA
  • COMMERCIAL CLAY - UNITED KINGDOM
  • ROYAL STAFFORD - UNITED KINGDOM
  • FRESHFIELD LANE BRICKWORKS LTD - UNITED KINGDOM
  • SC SEVEN GRUP - ROMANIA
  • CERAMUS S.A. - ROMANIA
  • LOYAL- TRADE INVEST SRL - ROMANIA
  • S.C PORCELAIN MANUFACTURERS S.R.L - ROMANIA
  • SC AXA PORCELAINE SRL - ROMANIA
  • REFRACTARIOS ALFRAN, S.A. - SPAIN
  • ATOMIZADORA, S.A. - SPAIN
  • TEJAS Y LADRILLOS DEL MEDITERRANEO S.A. - SPAIN
  • CERACASA, S.A. - SPAIN
  • PORCELANAS DEL PRINCIPADO, S.L. - SPAIN
  • PORVASAL S.A. - SPAIN
  • CERAMICHE SETTECENTO VALTRESINARO SPA - ITALY
  • EUROFILTER SPA - ITALY
  • MAREF SPA - ITALY
  • ARPA - ITALY
  • ANCAP SPA - ITALY
  • PORCELAINES AVIGNON SA - FRANCE
  • FAUCHON BAUDOT SARL - FRANCE
  • BUNDESVERBAND DER DEUTSCHEN ZIEGELINDUSTRIE - GERMANY
  • ASSOCIACAO PORTUGUESA DA INDUSTRIA DE CERAMICA - PORTUGAL
  • ARBEITSGEMEINSCHAFT KERAMISCHE INDUSTRIE E. V. - GERMANY
  • CONFEDERATION DES INDUSTRIES CERAMIQUES DE FRANCE - FRANCE
  • ASOCIACION ESPANOLA DE FABRICANTES DE AZULEJOS Y PAVIMENTOS CERAMICOS - SPAIN
  • CERAM RESEARCH LIMITED - UNITED KINGDOM
  • ASOCIACION ESPANOLA DE FABRICANTES DE LADRILLOS Y TEJAS DE ARCILLA COCIDA - SPAIN
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Quadro di finanziamento
  • 7FP-SME : RICERCA A FAVORE DELLE PMI nell'ambito del programma specifico “Capacità” recante attuazione del Settimo programma quadro (2007-2013) di attività comunitarie di ricerca, sviluppo tecnologico e dimostrazione
Area di interesse
  • Unione Europea