PSFC PPE Program

PSFC Personal Protective Equipment Program

Plasma Science and Fusion Center

Office of Environment, Safety, and Health

190 Albany Street, NW21 2nd floor
617-258-5473 (Nancy Masley)
617-253-8440 (Catherine Fiore)
617-253-8917 (Matt Fulton)
617-253-5982 (Bill Byford)
Fax 617-252-1808

Be Safe or Die

Personal Protective Equipment Program


The MIT Plasma Science and Fusion Center (PSFC) is committed to providing a safe working environment for all employees, students and visitors. As part of this commitment, personal protective equipment (PPE) is provided to help mitigate the hazards inherent to particular tasks or lab environments at the PSFC. The purpose of this document is to review the requirements for PPE's and to provide a mechanism for the continuing review of PPE requirements.

This document will describe the PPE program, and assign responsibility for maintenance of the program.

The requirements for PPE's will be elaborated first by general area requirements, then by specific tasks. An SOP for selecting and using PPE for specific tasks is included at the end of this document.


Responsibility for safe operation of PSFC facilities and for the safety of personnel proceeds from the individual and his/her supervisor to their group leaders, division heads, and ultimately to the PSFC Director.

The PSFC is responsible for providing adequate facilities, equipment, instruments, supervision, and instructions to control safety hazards and to comply with applicable state and federal requirements. In order to better fill this responsibility the Director of the PSFC has formed the Office of Environment, Safety, and Health and appointed a Safety Officer and a Safety Committee which report to her/him.

The responsibilities for maintaining a safe environment at the PSFC involve a large number of entities both internal and external to the PSFC. Please refer to the PSFC Safety Management Plan for further information.

Hazard Analysis

A hazard analysis of specific tasks and experimental areas will be updated yearly by the PSFC PPE committee. Most hazards are task specific at the PSFC, and the area where they are performed is subject to change with short notice. This analysis will be kept at the PSFC ES&H Office. Hazard analysis for new tasks will be added at the time of the PSFC Safety Committee Review.

Program Review

The program will be reviewed yearly by a committee consisting of the PSFC Safety Officer, PSFC Assistant Safety Officer, Administrative Personnel from the PSFC ES&H Office, and a designated member of the MIT Safety Office, the MIT Industrial Hygiene Office and the MIT Raditiation Protection Office. This document will be updated per the recommendations of this committee.

Area Specific PPE's

NW21 Alcator C-Mod Cell: Hard hats are required. Safety shoes are suggested.

NW21 Alcator C-Power Room: Hard hats are required. Safety shoes are suggested.

NW21 West Cell, LDX area: Hard hats are required. Safety shoes are suggested.

NW22 Chemistry Lab: Safety glasses or goggles required. Safety shoes are suggested.

Task specific PPE's

Electrical Work: Work on energized electrical systems is actively discouraged at the PSFC. Working in areas where it is possible to contact exposed electrical components requires use of hard hats and safety shoes which are specifically designed for high voltage resistance (Class B hardhats.) Specific tasks which have been identified as potentially exposing personnel to electrical flash hazards require additional fire retardant clothing. Check with Bill Byford for the complete list.

Hazardous chemical/solvent use: Gloves are required. If work is not done under a hood, respirators are required. In some cases, such as a large spill with dangerous levels of hazardous vapors, use of Self Contained Breathing Apparatus (SCBA) is required. Safety shoes are required. Safety glasses or goggles are required. This equipment is specified in the Standard Operating Procedure for each task.

Lasers: Operation of Class III and IV lasers within the nominal hazard zone requires use of appropriate eyewear as designated by the Radiation Protection Office.

Machine tool use: Safety glasses are required for all machine tool use including portable equipment. Safety shoes are required. Use of the diamond cutting wheel requires a full face shield.

Machining of Hazardous Materials: Cutting, grinding, or sanding of G-10 requires use of a respirator with canisters appropriate to formaldehyde if done without local drop ventilation. Respirator canisters will be specified by the Industrial Hygiene Office on review of materials to be machined.

Work in Noisy Environments: Hearing protection as specified by the Industrial Hygiene Office is required for work where noise levels exceed 80 decibels averaged over an 8 hour day. Personnel working in the alternator house must enroll in the hearing conservation program and will be provided with hearing protection.

Radioactive Material: Work with unsealed radioactive material which could have removable radioactivity requires use of labcoats and gloves. These will be specified by the Radiation Protection Office.

Work at heights exceeding 6 ft: Fall protection equipment is required as appropriate to the job. See the Fall Protection Program.

Welding: Use of welding mask, gloves, aprons, and respiratory protection appropriate to the task is required. See the Standard Operating Procedure for Welding Operations.

Other: SCBA is required for diborane work as specified in the diborane handling procedures.

General Requirements

Hard Hats which are provided by the PSFC meet ANSI Z-89.1985 class A and B. Class C hard hats are prohibited.

Safety Shoes must carry a stamp on the inside which indicates that they meet the specifications provided by ANSI Z41.1-1967. Safety shoes worn in areas where it is possible to contact live electrical components must be appropriate for high voltage work.

Protective Eyewear must meet the specifications of ANSI Z87.1 and be appropriate to the task.

Standard Operating Procedures

Safety Shoes Standard Operating Procedure for Safety Shoes

Hearing Protection Standard Operating Procedure for Hearing Protection

Impact Protection SOP for Head, Eye, and Face Protection from Impact

Laser Eyeware SOP for Laser Eye Protection

Respiratory Protection Standard Operating Procedure for Respiratory Protection

Chemical ProtectionStandard Operating Procedure for Selection of PPE for Chemical Usage

This page maintained by Catherine L. Fiore FIORE@PSFC.MIT.EDU