William A. Groves, PhD, CIH, CSP

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William A. Groves, PhD, CIH, CSP

Associate Professor of Industrial Health and Safety

223 Hosler Building

814-863-1618

Biographical Sketch: 

William Groves joined what is now Penn State University's John and Willie Leone Family Department of Energy and Mineral Engineering in January 2000 after three years as an assistant professor with the Department of Preventive Medicine and Environmental Health at the University of Iowa. He was previously employed as an industrial hygienist with Aetna Life and Casualty, Newport News Shipbuilding, and The Dow Chemical Company. Groves earned a B.A. in natural sciences from Edinboro University and a B.S. in Chemical Engineering from Case Western Reserve University. He received an M.P.H. (1993) and Ph.D. (1997) in Industrial Health from The University of Michigan and holds certifications in industrial hygiene (CIH) and safety (CSP). Dr. Groves began his graduate studies as a student at the University of Michigan where he helped develop instrumentation based on Surface Acoustic Wave (SAW) sensors to measure organic vapors in breath and air. He has extended his research using SAW sensors to measure volatile organic contaminants in drinking water. In more recent research funded by NIOSH through the Centers for Disease Control, Dr. Groves developed a sampling system to measure the effectiveness of respirators in the workplace. Dr. Groves is currently collaborating with scientists from the NIOSH Exposure Assessment Branch, Health Effects Laboratory Division, in developing and testing a physiologically based air sampling pump to improve exposure assessment for workers exposed to organic vapors. Groves is a member of the editorial review boards for the Journal of Occupational and Environmental Hygiene, and the Journal of the International Society for Respiratory Protection, and is a frequent reviewer for the Journal of Environmental Monitoring. He also recently served on a National Research Council / Institute of Medicine committee charged by the National Academies to review the NIOSH Agriculture, Forestry, and Fishing Research Programs.

Educational Background: 

Ph.D. (Industrial Health), University of Michigan, 1997

M.P.H. (Industrial Health), University of Michigan, 1993

B.S. (Chemical Engineering), Case Western Reserve University, 1985

Certifications: 
  • Certified Industrial Hygienist (CIH), Certificate #6394
  • Certified Safety Professional (CSP), Certificate #10994
Research Interests: 
  • Development of sensors and instrumentation for measurement of organic vapors
  • Exposure assessment methods and strategies
  • Biological monitoring - breath analysis
  • Personal protective equipment - evaluation of respirator performance
  • Application of neural networks to sensor arrays for organic vapor analysis
Active Research Projects: 

Exposure assessment by physiological sampling pump-prediction of minute ventilation using a portable respiratory inductive plethysmograph system (LifeshirtT)

Ming-I Lin, William A. Groves, Andris Freivalds - Penn State University

Eun Gyung Lee, Martin Harper, James E. Slaven and Larry Lee - NIOSH / EAB / HELD

Minute ventilation measured by a respiratory inductive plethysmograph was used in a model to control flow rate of a physiologic sampling pump for evaluating exposure to airborne contaminants.

Funded by the Exposure Assessment Branch, Health Effects Laboratory Division (HELD), National Institute for Occupational Safety and Health (NIOSH)

Exposure assessment by physiological sampling pump - laboratory and field evaluation of a physiologically based sampling system for assessing a worker's exposure to chemicals at the workplace

Ming-I Lin, William A. Groves, Andris Freivalds - Penn State University

Eun Gyung Lee, Martin Harper, James E. Slaven and Larry Lee - NIOSH / EAB / HELD

A physiologically based sampling pump (PSP) is being tested in a laboratory exposure chamber. Volunteers are recruited to simulate painting applications using different levels of physical exertion in a chamber containing known concentrations of m-xylene. The performance of the PSP and traditional sampling pumps will be characterized for exposure scenarios with differing degrees of correlation between physical exertion and vapor concentration. Upon completion of laboratory experiments, the PSP will be tested in the field with actual workers engaged in occupations involving exposures to organic vapors.

Funded by the Exposure Assessment Branch, Health Effects Laboratory Division (HELD), National Institute for Occupational Safety and Health (NIOSH)

Effect of Sample Holder on Measurement of Organic Vapors using Sorbent Tubes

Brian Marpoe, William A. Groves - Penn State University

Research is underway to examine whether sample holders used when air sampling for organic vapors influences the resulting measurement of concentration. Preliminary results from another project appeared to show potentially significant differences in concentrations (~10%) measured with and without the use of a sample holder for the activated carbon sorbent tube. The study will examine the influence of several variables including sample holder, flow rate, pump mechanism, exposure profile, and vapor chemical properties in the measurement of airborne concentrations.

Characterization and Control of Ozone Exposure in a Bottled Water Processing Facility

James Gazza, William A. Groves - Penn State University

A study is underway to examine the effects of process variables, production rates, and control strategies on worker exposure to ozone during water processing and bottle filling.

Selected Publications: 
  1. Lin, M., Groves, W., Freivalds, A., Lee, E., Harper, M., Slaven, J., and L. Lee, (2008). Exposure assessment by physiological sampling pump-prediction of minute ventilation using a portable respiratory inductive plethysmograph system. J. Environ. Monit., 2008, 10, 1179-1186. DOI: 10.1039/b806292g.
  2. Groves, W., Kecojevic, V., and D. Komljenovic, (2007). Analysis of Fatalities and Injuries Involving Mining Equipment. Journal of Safety Research. Vol. 38, Issue 4, pp. 461-470.
  3. Kecojevic, V., Komljenovic, D., Groves, W., and M. Radomsky, (2007). An Analysis of Equipment-Related Fatal Accidents in U.S. Mining Operations: 1995-2005. Safety Science. Vol. 45, Issue 8, pp. 864-874
  4. Groves, W., Grey, A., and P. O'Shaughnessy, (2006). Surface Acoustic Wave Microsensor Array for Measuring VOCs in Drinking Water, J. Environ. Monit., 8, 932 - 941.
  5. Groves W., (2006). Personal Sampling System for Measuring Workplace Protection Factors for Gases and Vapors, Journal of the International Society for Respiratory Protection, Spring/Summer, 30-43
  6. Groves, W., Agarwal, D., Chandra, M., and S. Reynolds, (2005). A Fluorometric Method for Ammonia Analysis, J. Environ. Monit., 1, 163 - 168.
  7. Groves, W., and C. Achutan, (2004). Laboratory and Field Evaluation of a SAW Microsensor Array for Measuring Perchloroethylene in Breath, Journal of Occupational and Environmental Hygiene 1; 779-788.
  8. Groves, W., Ramani, R., Radomsky, M., and J. Flick, (2004). An Analysis of PPE Guidelines Distributed to Emergency Responders at the World Trade Center and Pentagon Disaster Sites, Professional Safety, November; 31-41.
  9. Groves, W., and E. Zellers, (2001). Analysis Of Solvent Vapors In Breath And Ambient Air With A Surface Acoustic Wave Sensor Array, Ann Occup Hyg, 45(8); 609-623
  10. Groves, W., and E. Zellers, (1996). Investigation Of Organic Vapor Losses To Condensed Water Vapor In Tedlar® Bags Used For Exhaled-Breath Sampling, Am Ind Hyg Assoc J, 57:257-63.
Recent Activities: 

Professional Society Memberships

  • Member, American Industrial Hygiene Association (1989-present)
  • Member, American Academy of Industrial Hygiene (1990-present)
  • Member, American Conference of Governmental Industrial Hygienists (1998-present)
  • Member, American Society of Safety Engineers (1998-present)

Professional Society Committee Activity

  • Chair, American Industrial Hygiene Association (AIHA) Gas and Vapor Detection Systems Committee, 2000-2001
  • Vice-Chair, American Industrial Hygiene Association (AIHA) Gas and Vapor Detection Systems Committee, 1999-2000
  • Secretary, American Industrial Hygiene Association (AIHA) Gas and Vapor Detection Systems Committee, 1997-1999

Editorial Review Board Member

  • Journal of Occupational and Environmental Hygiene (2003 - present)
  • Journal of the International Society for Respiratory Protection (2003 - present)

Certification Review Board Member

  • Certified Mine Safety Professional Certification Board (CMSPCB) (2004-2008)

Participation on National Committees

  • Member, Committee to Review the NIOSH Agriculture, Forestry, and Fishing Research Program, National Research Council, The National Academies, Washington, D.C., December 2006 - December 2007.