Measurement procedure for determination of ammonia

Project No. BIA 2036


completed 07/1999


The commission for the investigation of health hazards of chemical compounds in the work area (MAK-commission) has recommended a lowering of the limit value for ammonia in the air. At the moment there is a discussion about the adoption of the lowered limit values in the TRGS 900 "Limit values for the workplace air". The method so far applied by the BG Institute for Occupational Safety - BIA would not meet the standards of DIN EN 482 "Workplace atmosphere - general requirements for the performance of procedures for the measurement of chemical agents" were the limit values lowered. A new ion chromatographic measurement procedure had to be evaluated to meet the requirements of DIN EN 482.


A measurement procedure for determination of ammonia in the air in workplaces was evaluated that meets the requirements of DIN EN 482. The procedure is based upon ammonium enrichment on specially coated activated charcoal test tubes and a precipitation of ubiquitous ammonium salts on a membrane filter. The analysis is made by ion chromatography after elution of the enriched ammonium with an acid buffer solution. Ubiquitous ammonium salts and urea do not interfer with the determination. The practical tests were performed by the chemical industry.


There is a new measurement procedure for ammonia which is used as a standard within the measurement system for hazardous substances of the Institutions for Statutory Accident Insurance and Prevention (BGMG) which meets the requirements of DIN EN 482. Instructions for use are available.

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Financed by:
  • Hauptverband der gewerblichen Berugsgenossenschaften (HVBG)
Research institution(s):
  • Berufsgenossenschaftliches Institut für Arbeitssicherheit - BIA

-cross sectoral-

Type of hazard:

Gefahrstoffe, Arbeitsbedingte Gesundheitsgefahren


Exposition, Messverfahren

Description, key words:

measurement procedure, ammonia, ion chromatography, exposure