Objective: To reconstruct agent-specific occupational exposures for a cohort of jet engine manufacturing workers for use in an epidemiological mortality study.
Methods: Potential chemical and physical exposures at eight jet engine manufacturing and overhaul/repair plants were evaluated for the period 1952 to 2001. Eleven agents were selected for detailed examination, and a job-exposure matrix was constructed.
Results: Quantitative exposure estimates were generated for metalworking fluids, nickel, cobalt, chromium, solvents, and incomplete combustion aerosol from metalworking fluids. Qualitative exposure estimates were assigned for ionizing radiation, electromagnetic fields, polychlorinated biphenyls, and lead–cadmium. All exposures showed decreasing trends over the study period.
Conclusions: The quantitative exposure levels generated in this study were lower than early contemporaneous professional practice recommendations and were similar to or lower than published data from other industries.