Aerotoxic Syndrome – The Evidence

This page contains numerous papers that cover the subject

A Group Part 1: History of Cabin Air contamination 

Chronic low-level exposure to toxic compounds in airplane cabin air may result in Aerotoxic Syndrome (AS).
Aetiologic agents are organophosphates and numerous volatile organic hydrocarbons originating from leaks of engine oil and hydraulic fluids. Despite a documented history spanning decades, the role of carbon monoxide remains – Continued

A Group Part 2: Root cause of Cabin Air Contamination

The primary aim of the 1978 Airline Deregulation Act in the USA was to encourage
competition with the effect of lowering fares, rendering air travel more accessible to a wider segment of the population. Unsurprisingly, airline revenue plummeted. The resulting need for drastic cost-cutting was partly met by neglecting costly engine maintenance – Continued

A Group Part 3: Aircraft powerplants Cabin Air contamination

Although the first commercial passenger jet aircraft used engine bleed air to heat and
pressurize the cabin and provide breathing air, until about 1980 most airliners used external
fresh air and turbocompressors for the job. Thereafter bleed air became standard. But the
combination of increasing engine reliability – Continued

A Group Part 4: Cabin air contamination on commercial aircraft

Toxins emanating from the engines and bled into the cabin are critically appraised. It is
concluded that the highest risk is due to carbon monoxide, with organophosphates being of secondary importance, and aromatic amines of almost negligible importance. In the absence of reliable measurements of the cabin air concentrations of contaminants, recourse – Continued

A Group Part 5: Carbon monoxide -how it forms in aircraft engines

This paper outlines the production of carbon monoxide in jet aircraft. Given that CO is a
product of incomplete combustion of carbonaceous material, the obvious sources would appear to be the gas turbines—the main engines and the auxiliary power unit. Nevertheless, leakage of CO from the planned combustion of jet fuel in its chamber seems unlikely. Continued

A Group Part 6: The Atmosphere

This paper examines the overall environment in which exposure to cabin air contamination occurs, namely the atmosphere. The primary toxin is presumed to be
carbon monoxide, as established in the preceding parts of this series, for which occupational exposure limits have been established to the terrestrial workplace, assumed to be at or close to sea level, with scant regard paid to to altitude-specific modifications appropriate to the aircraft cabin working environment. Continued

Cabin air safety oversight in the airline industry

The risk management process requires the practitioner to find proximate and root causes of
unsafe acts and conditions. The process recognizes no disciplinary boundaries. The
contaminated cabin air issue is a profound example of such a quest. A prevention plan has
been identified and is here presented in initial form as a summary. The issue originated with the US Government’s zeal to increase public – Continued


Aerotoxic Syndrome Articles & Papers

Part 1 – History of Cabin Air Contamination 
Part 2 – Root Cause of Cabin Air Contamination
Part 3 – Aircraft Powerplants Cabin Air Contamination