2008 NSTI Nanotechnology Conference and Trade Show - Nanotech 2008 - 11th Annual

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TechConnect Summit
Clean Technology 2008

Risk-Informed Decision Framework for Nanomaterials Classification

I. Linkov, T. Tervonen, J.A. Steevens, J. Kim, J.R. Figueira
US Army Engineer Research and Development Center, US

nanotechnology, decision analysis, SMAA

Potential toxicity of nanomaterials and resulting risks at different stages of product life cycle (e.g., development, production, use and disposal) has recently attracted significant attention of regulatory agencies and stakeholders. To guide nanomaterial research and application as well as its safe use, we propose a decision support system for classifying nanomaterials into different risk categories. We proposed to use Multi-Criteria Decision Analysis for clustering nanomaterials into risk groups. The classification system is based on a set of performance metrics that measure both the toxicity of raw materials as well as the expected impacts through the product life cycle. The stochastic multi-criteria acceptability analysis (SMAA-TRI) sorting method allows integration of current knowledge on nanomaterial physico-chemical characteristics, associated uncertainties, as well as expert estimates in classification scheme. SMAA-TRI expedites analysis of uncertainty by using Monte Carlo simulation to explore the spaces of feasible values for weights, criteria measurements and other model parameters. The results provide decision makers with a probabilistic characterization of nanomaterials for risk management purposes. The proposed framework can be used for: (1) an initial rough classification of the materials, (2) deciding which materials need additional toxicity testing and risk assessment and (3) providing comprehensive recommendations on risks associated with different nanomaterials.

Nanotech 2008 Conference Program Abstract