UV Wavelengths & Protective Eyewear
Spectroline® UV-absorbing eye and face wear is specifically designed to protect the user against most ultraviolet light sources. The UVS-20 Overglass Spectacles, UVS-30 Spectacles and UVG-50 Goggles provide adequate eye shielding, while the UVF-80 face shield protects both the eyes and face from ultraviolet radiation.
The transmission in the entire ultraviolet range is less than , thus reducing irradiance at the eyes and face from most sources to levels below the maximum recommended in NIOSH Document HSM 73-11009. A special formula reduces eye fatigue, eliminates “blue haze” interference, and improves contrast between the fluorescent area and the background.
The UVG-50 Goggles and UVF-80 face shield provide protection from exposure to extended or high intensity UV sources, while the UVS-30 Spectacles are generally recommended for sporadic, lower intensity UV sources. The goggles and face shield both meet ANSI specification Z871.1 for safety eye wear and OSHA standard 1910.133 for eye and face protection.
Attractive and durable, Spectroline® UV-absorbing eye and face wear provides long-wearing comfort. The well-proportioned frames of the UVS-20 Overglass Spectacles and UVG-50 Goggles fit easily over regular eyeglasses, while the UVF-80 face shield is adjustable to fit all sizes and has a visor that can be pivoted off the face.
The Electromagnetic Radiation Spectrum
Ultraviolet light is an invisible band of electromagnetic radiation just beyond the violet end of the visible spectrum. This band is generally divided into three regions that differ in their effect upon the human body.
The SHORT WAVELENGTH region, also known as far ultraviolet, germicidal or UV-C, extends from 180 to 280nm. Although it has little penetrating power, short wave UV can cause severe burns to the eyes and skin. When short wave UV affects the eyes, the discomfort is commonly known as “welders flash” or “ground glass eyeball”. The usual artificial sources of this radiation are low pressure, mercury vapor lamps (and certain other metal vapor lamps) used in UV sterilization chromatography, mineralogy, EPROM erasing, photochemical reactions, etc.
The MEDIUM WAVELENGTH region, also knows as middle ultraviolet, erythemal or UV-B, extends from 280 to 320nm. It has high penetrating power and can seriously burn the eyes and skin. The usual artificial sources of this radiation are “sun lamps” used for cosmetic or therapeutic purposes and vitamin production.
The LONG WAVELENGTH region, also known as near ultraviolet, black light, Woods’ light or UV-A, extends from 320 to 400nm. A portion of the population is overly sensitive to radiation in this region of the spectrum and may experience adverse effects. For example, some people experience “blue haze” interference when viewing sources of long wave due to the fluorescent effects in the ocular media. The usual artificial sources of this radiation are low and medium pressure mercury vapor lamps used in non-destructive testing and quality control inspections, medial diagnosis, UV curing, general fluorescence analysis, etc.
Ultraviolet light is a natural part of our environment, most commonly found in sunlight. Everyone is exposed to UV sources natural and/or artificial, on a daily basis. However, unprotected and prolonged exposure to any form of UV light, including long wave UV, can result in cataracts and possibly cancer. Even brief exposure can be hazardous if the UV intensity is very high. Thus it is advised that the eyes always be shielded for maximum personal safety. When utilizing medium or short wave ultraviolet, the face and skin should additionally be protected.
Certain individuals are naturally hypersensitive to all forms of UV and should avoid any exposure. These individuals usually know if they are hypersensitive. In general, if itching, inflammation or other unusual symptoms occur, UV exposure should cease immediately. People using certain drugs that produce photosensitivity should avoid exposure to all UV sources.