User instructions for the GESTIS International Limit Values database (GESTIS-ILV)

Home page

When the GESTIS-ILV database is opened, the substances listed are displayed in alphabetical order, in either grid or list view. This can be selected by means of the button at the top on the right (see Figure 1).

Screenshot of the homa page

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Figure 1: Home page of GESTIS-ILV
Source: IFA

Clicking on the magnifying glass symbol opens the search field, with which a search for a specific substance can be launched. You search using either the CAS number or the substance name. We recommend using the CAS number for searches.

Tip: The search term must not contain any special characters or spaces.

Display limit values for a substance

To display the limit values for a substance applicable in various countries, search for the substance using the search bar, then click on the appropriate substance in the list of results. A table then opens showing the limit values for the substance in various countries (see Figure 2).

Screenshot of the table

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Figure 2: Table showing limit values for benzene
Source: IFA

The limit values are stated both as a time-weighted average (TWA) for an eight-hour shift and as a short-term exposure limit (STEL), in each case in ppm, mg/m³ and F/cm³.

Limit values that have changed since the last update are highlighted in yellow. Limit values that have been added recently are highlighted in green (see Figure 3).

Screenshot with a recently added value highlighted in green

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Figure 3: Recently added limit value
Source: IFA

The numbers in brackets after the limit value (footnotes) indicate that remarks on this limit value exist (hazard resulting from percutaneous absorption, inhalable fraction, instantaneous value). Clicking on the small downward arrow expands the explanations for the footnotes (see Figure 4).

Screenshot of limit values with remarks

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Figure 4: Limit values with expanded remarks field ("Remarks") for the hazardous substance
Source: IFA

Further Information

Screenshot of the Footnotes

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Figure 5: Further information on GESTIS-ILV
Source: IFA

Further information, including the original limit value lists (bibliography), the project partners, a list of the data indicating when last updated (Timeliness of data) and a link to the GESTIS-ILV website can be found in the footer (Figure 5).


Institute for Occupational Safety and Health of the German Social Accident Insurance (IFA)
Chemical and biological hazards department

Alte Heerstrasse 111
53757 Sankt Augustin

Birgit Heinrich
Tel: +49 30 13001-3250

Ronja Schneck
Tel: +49 30 13001-3265

Katrin Pitzke
Tel: +49 30 13001-3200

We welcome your questions and suggestions: